20 Unresolved Mysteries And Plot Holes Shazam Leaves Hanging
No movie is perfect. Even The Godfather has some mistakes in its 3-hour runtime. Still, there is usually so much to enjoy in a film, that it's easy to overlook the questions it leaves unanswered. After all, You can usually get so invested in a film's story, that those little lapses in logic really make no difference at all. You might not even think about them until you get home from the theater, open your fridge, and try to find yourself a snack. Only then might you start asking questions, or saying "wait a minute, that didn't make sense when..." It doesn't mean the film was bad by any measure. In fact, a lot of films that have been famously praised as being classics are filled with plotholes and lingering questions.
The same can be said of most films in the superhero genre. While they usually attempt to fill in all the blanks and answer for decades worth of complicated comic book lore, they can still fall short in some ways, leaving the audience questioning certain events that take place in the story. Shazam!, for all its good aspects, doesn't always tell the tidiest story. That's understandable to a point: after all, it is a movie about a wizard granting a teenager the ability to turn into a grown-up superhero. Still, it's these questions and plotholes that seemed to bother us the most. Don't get us wrong: it's still a really fun movie, and worth watching if you're a superhero fan. But you might find yourself asking the same questions we did. These are 20 Unresolved Mysteries And Plot Holes Shazam Leaves Hanging.
20 Where do people go during teleportation?
One of the most important parts of the story in Shazam! is how people that the wizard believes are pure of heart are magically transported to the Rock of Eternity. In the film's opening moments, Thaddeus Sivana is taken there in his family's car. Later, Billy Batson rides a subway car to the magical lair.
However, this begs the question: what happens to the other people in the car and on the subway when this is happening? They just kind of disappear, leaving just Sivana and Billy to enter the Rock of Eternity. What happened to them? Are they just temporarily wiped from existence or what?
19 What do they observe during teleportation for that matter?
Forget about the fact that these people just seem to disappear. Fine, let's assume that they are continuing their lives as normal somehow. Then what are they observing during the moments when people are teleported to the Rock of Eternity? Do they just witness a kid completely disappearing?
It's an odd choice for the film to make to have these questions be so glaring. When Billy is riding the subway, there are clearly other people on the car with him, but they just fade away. When he returns as the adult superhero, it's like he's been there the whole time, but if the train kept making regular stops, then what did the rest of the people witness?
18 Who is making all the superhero merchandise?
In the real world, we all know that it is, of course, Warner Bros. who produces the DCEU films. That means that they also make a healthy amount of money from merchandise sales. After all, how many people have you seen walking down the street in Superman, Batman, and even Wonder Woman T-shirts?
However, as we see in the film, Freddy also wears an Aquaman t-shirt. There is a toy store filled with Batman figures. Someone is selling replica batarangs. Who is doing this? What company was able to buy the rights to these superhero logos? Did they even have to buy the rights? Certainly, Superman and Batman didn't copyright anything, right?
17 How did Freddy buy the Superman bullet?
When Billy, as well as the audience, are first introduced to Freddy Freeman, we get a taste of his peculiar sense of humor. We also get to see how big of a superhero fan Freddy is. He has a replica Batarang, newspapers about every single superhero event, and one item, in particular, that is the pride of his collection: a bullet fired at Superman.
The bullet is in a plastic bag, along with what looks like a certificate of authenticity. However, there is one big question hanging over this item: how did Freddy acquire it in the first place? He would have had to have bought it online, but with whose credit card? Also, with so many bullets fired at Superman, can one really be worth all that much anyway?
16 Why does the wizard settle for Billy?
One of the biggest aspects of Shazam! is the fact that the wizard only wants to grant his power to someone that is worthy of having it. He searches for what seems like decades, maybe even centuries, in order to find the right person on whom to bestow his power. Then he settles for Billy Batson.
Why though? Was it because Billy had just beat up some bullies? Did we forget the fact that he tricked the cops and even stole one of their lunches? It seems like the wizard eventually just said "whatever," and decided that Billy would have to do. Was there no one before him that was even just a slightly better person?
15 How is Sivana getting funding for his research?
When we catch up with Doctor Sivana as an adult, we see that he has continued trying to find his way back to the Rock of Eternity. This makes sense. After all, if anyone had been brought there as a kid, they would probably spend most of their life trying to find a way back.
However, we see that Sivana is given a lab and what appears to be a large staff of scientists. Who is funding this research? Yes, we find out that his father is the head of a major corporation bearing the family name, but he despises his son! Why would he ever give him any money for anything?
14 No one is going to bother looking into what happened in the board room?
So after Sivana finds his way back to the Rock of Eternity, he finally grants himself the power of the seven deadly sins. What's the first thing he does with his newfound power? He goes after his emotionally destructive father and brother, of course. The scene where the sins attack and take out every person in the board room is pretty effective (and scary, to boot).
However, it begs the question: is no one going to talk about what happened in there? there are literally no news reports about a man being thrown out a window, and an entire room of people being torn apart and devoured by monsters. Why is no one talking about this? Maybe the appearance of a new superhero was too much for everyone already.
13 Wouldn't the lightning always burn a hole in the roof?
Billy Batson's main power (and the one that most people were familiar with before the film), is his ability to turn into a superhero by shouting the word "Shazam!" When he does, a bolt of lightning comes down from the sky and transforms him into the grown-up superhero. How does the lightning work though?
Okay, maybe that's an unfair question to ask of a superhero film, but when Billy is inside his home, he says "shazam," and the lightning comes straight the house, leaving a singed hole. Wouldn't this happen every time Bill is indoors? Like at the school? Or in the mall? Wouldn't people really start to notice what was going on?
12 Isn't Billy supposed to have the wisdom of Solomon?
"Shazam" isn't just a fun, magic word that turns Billy into a superhero. It's actually an acronym for all of the mythical figures that imbue Billy with his powers: Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, and Mercury. Solomon, the figure that provides the 'S' in "Shazam," is supposed to provide Billy with wisdom.
And yet, we never see that in the film. It's possible that the filmmakers really wanted the story to reflect the fact that Billy is still just a kid who has been granted immense power, but it's even mentioned by the wizard when Billy first turns into the hero. So why does he not see to be more intelligent or wiser about how to properly use his powers?
11 And the courage of Achilles?
For that matter, Shazam is also supposed to possess the courage of Achilles. In the comics, this gives Billy the strength to take on any foe, even though he is still just a kid on the inside. It's part of what makes the character so endearing: he is never afraid to face villains who might be just as strong or even stronger than he is.
Yet, in the film, Billy turns into a total coward when he finally has to face off against Sivana. He runs from him, hides from him, and allows his foster siblings to fall into danger because he just wants to run away from his problems. Again, this was probably done to give the character a chance to develop through the film, but it's always been a part of his powers, so what gives?
10 What happens to all the stuff Billy and Freddy buy?
Like any teenager who suddenly becomes super powerful, Billy uses his powers to mess around, rather than actually fighting evil or anything like that. He and Freddy spend time testing out his powers, showing off for people, and posting videos to YouTube. At one point, they use Billy's lightning power to make an ATM start spitting out cash.
Billy and Freddy then use this ill-gotten money to buy a bunch of cool stuff: computers, a big TV, an X-Box... What happens to all of this stuff later in the film? Freddy's room is filled with electronics, yet later, it is all gone with no explanation whatsoever. Wouldn't the foster parents have some questions about where it all came from, as well?
9 No one noticed Shazam turning back into Billy at any point?
Unlike someone like Clark Kent or Bruce Wayne who are able to change in a phone booth or a big cave so that no one discovers their secret identity, Billy Batson really puts himself out in the open when he turns into his superhero persona, considering a giant bolt of lightning comes down from the sky and transforms him.
In the film, this aspect of the hero really seems to push reality. After all, one scene sees Billy turning back into himself in the middle of a shopping mall full of people so he can escape from Sivana. No one saw that happen? At all? In a world where everyone has a camera in their pocket, you would think someone might have seen something.
8 Sivana just took a kid from the mall without anyone saying anything?
During that whole shopping mall scene, Billy runs away because he can't stand to face an enemy that is just as powerful as he is. It's the first time we really see him afraid, and even in his superhero form, it's a nice reminder that this is really just a kid facing something that is far bigger than himself.
Of course, this is also the moment when the villain takes a friend of the hero in order to draw him out of hiding. Still, even with all of the superpowered shenanigans going on, no one noticed a kid being taken from the mall against his will? You might think that even in all the chaos, someone might have called the cops or something.
7 How did Freddy know that the Batarang hurt Sivana?
During a key scene when the hero and his foster brothers and sisters learn about Sivana's weakness, Freddy hurls his replica Batarang at Sivana's head. Turning to face them, Billy notices that the Batarang has left a wound, revealing that as long as the sins are outside of Sivana's body, he is vulnerable to attack.
Later in the film, though, it is Freddy that tells everyone that Sivana was hurt by the Batarang. Wait... He didn't see what happened, Billy did! Why isn't he the one explaining this to everyone? It's a small quibble, but it doesn't make a lot of sense. The character who witnessed it should be the one sharing the information.
6 How did the Shazam family get back to the rock?
At the end of the film, the Shazam family is returning the eye to its rightful place in the Rock of Eternity. It's a nice little moment that allows the family to revel in their win against evil, and to designate the rock of Eternity their hero's lair (even though Darla isn't exactly sure what a lair is in the first place).
Still, you have to ask yourself: how did they get back there in the first place? Every time someone has gone to the Rock of Eternity, it's through either the magic of the wizard, or through figuring out how to mark a door with the right symbols (in the case of Sivana). How did the heroes get back there this time?
5 Where does the teleportation come from?
This leads to yet another question about movement in the film. After Billy and his foster siblings have made their escape from Sivana and are trying to find their way back home (resulting in some pretty hilarious moments where they open doors to scarier universes), they eventually just teleport back.
Wait... Where did this teleportation power come from all of a sudden? It is never mentioned in the rest of the film, and after they do it that time, it is never once brought up again. It seems like a pretty convenient superpower, and yet Billy only uses it once? Is that how they got back to the rock of Eternity again? If so, why is it never explained?
4 Wouldn't the police be able to find Billy's mom?
Billy Batson, even from his earliest comic book incarnations, is an orphan. It's a huge part of his story, and it's what makes his transformation into a superhero all the more meaningful. It also matters because in the film, Billy discovers that his birth mother didn't want him, but it helps him to realize that his foster family is really where he belongs.
However, we see how Billy becomes lost in the first act. He is eventually picked up by the police, and he is able to tell them his first and last name. Yet somehow, the police are never able to find his mom. Even though the film tries to explain this away by revealing she went back to using her maiden name, wouldn't that still be on record? And couldn't the police have found her before she had time to legally do that?
3 When did Shazam meet up with Superman?
Throughout Shazam!, we see the connections to the wider DCEU: Freddy's collection, the merchandise in the toy store, Freddy's Aquaman t-shirt... So we already know that the film is really taking place in a wider universe, even though it still manages to feel like a standalone project.
Then the film goes and ruins all that goodwill with an unnecessary Superman cameo in its final moments. This also raises a big question: when did Billy have time to meet up with Superman? Even if he did have the time, how did he convince him to take part in having lunch with Freddy?
2 How is Mister Mind going to get Sivana out of jail?
It's become standard operating procedure in superhero films to include a mid-credits scene that teases out a possible future storyline for any upcoming sequels. In the case of Shazam!, that includes a cameo from classic Shazam villain, Mister Mind, a telepathic and superintelligent caterpillar. Yes, we're being serious.
Now, even for a caterpillar that is hyperintelligent and has some pretty powerful telepathic abilities, getting someone out of jail might be a bit of a challenge. How is Mister Mind going to get Sivana out of there? Even if he does, how is Sivana going to get his powers back?
1 How did Mister Mind escape in the first place?
There is actually a moment early in the film where we see Mister Mind trapped in a glass dome in the Rock of Eternity. Later, we see that the glass dome has been broken, and Mister Mind is nowhere to be found. This small story that plays out in three acts (kind of) seems to be setting up the next film.
Still, how did Mister Mind manage to get out of there in the first place? It's possible the dome was damaged in any of the sequences that took place in the rock of Eternity, but we never actually see what happened to unleash this evil caterpillar upon the world. Seems like the film could have given us some more solutions.