Batman v Superman Ultimate Cut Features a Big Lex Luthor Easter Egg

(Photo: Warner Bros.)

If an Easter egg exists only in a director's cut, and not the theatrical cut of a movie, does it still count?

We vote "hell yes," especially when it's a pretty cool one.

On Lex Luthor's prison uniform at the end of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, it's been much-discussed that his prisoner number ends in TK-421, the number of the Imperial Storm Trooper who had Han and Luke in custody in Star Wars.

This is one of those Easter eggs that got spotted right away when Batman v Superman hit theaters, and not really a surprise -- but what's interesting is that there's a line of dialogue in the just-released Ultimate Cut of the film that references Luthor as having a different prisoner number entirely -- and one that has an entirely different Easter egg baked into it.

Just before Batman arrives to hassle Luthor at the end of the movie, a guard rousts the criminal, callinghim prisoner "AC23-1940," and saying that the warden wants a word with him.

This is, of course, just before the lights go out, the prison staff vanishes, and Batman reveals that he's going to have Luthor relocated to Arkham Asylum.

Even if you didn't specifically know the piece of trivia, many comics fans could probably guess what that "new" prisoner number means: Lex Luthor's first appearance in the comic books took place in Action Comics #23, cover dated April 1940. This, along with a wink-and-a-nod reference to Superman's first appearance in the form of an image of the Man of Steel lifting a car over his head on the wall of Wallace Keefe's apartment, means that we were getting some pretty decent Golden Age nods in the course of the movie.


Fearing the actions of a god-like Super Hero left unchecked, Gotham City's own formidable, forceful vigilante takes on Metropolis's most revered, modern-day savior, while the world wrestles with what sort of hero it really needs. And with Batman and Superman at war with one another, a new threat quickly arises, putting mankind in greater danger than it's ever known before.