It’s always possible that the DCEU could outdo the MCU, but whether it’ll happen in 2020 is still a big question. The reason it hasn’t happened as of yet is pretty simple, the DCEU has been trying their best to keep up with the MCU by employing the same tactics. What this means is that when the Marvel universe decided to go off canon and reveal the identities of their heroes to the people they kind of managed to shine a spotlight on their most popular characters and made them easier to relate to since they weren’t hiding any longer. People knew Tony Stark was Iron Man after the first movie, and Thor never hid who he was. Captain America was Steve Rogers, that was a known fact, and none of the others were really hiding except for Ant Man, who had to hide his face for practical reasons since he didn’t want to go back to jail. But when the DC characters started being portrayed as moody and decidedly non-heroic, Snyder’s Superman and Batfleck weren’t exactly the prime examples of heroism many times, things just kind of fell apart.
There are a lot of reason that people have taken to Marvel over DC at times, but a lot of it boils down to the fact that a lot of the most favored heroes and villains in Marvel aren’t godlike or even unreachable when it comes to who they are. Even cosmic beings such as the Silver Surfer are seen to be tortured by mistakes they’ve made in their lives, which is easy to relate to as a human being. The DC characters have usually been too, well, perfect. A lot of them are super strong, super fast, super intelligent, and of course super-good looking and just about super-everything. Their weaknesses, those few they have, are so far out of left field that one has to think that it would take a god or someone close to even contend with them, since Superman has been seen to take out Thor and Batman has even been seen to take out Captain America, and Spawn on one occasion, which shouldn’t have even been a close fight. In short, the DC characters are just too powerful most times to really allow people to relate to them.
That’s been changing though as time has gone on, as the Wonder Woman and Aquaman movies have shown heroes that are insanely overpowered but still possess enough humanity to them to be vulnerable in some way. It’s easy to see that people love the fact that their heroes can do just about anything, but some vulnerability makes them easier to accept, because otherwise they might as well all be Greek gods and goddesses that are essentially untouchable by mortals. In terms of power levels and abilities DC already has the edge on a lot of Marvel heroes, but in terms of movies and popularity the MCU has been killing it, which is funny since this is really their only area of dominance when it comes to the two brands. DC has led in the video games, animated movies, and just about everything else save for merchandising, which is a close call since anywhere you see Marvel merchandise you might actually see DC as well, unless you’re in Disneyland of course, since the House of Mouse doesn’t own DC…yet.
In 2020 though it almost seems as though DC could finally topple the MCU simply because everything to this point in the Marvel universe has been leading up to Infinity War and Endgame, which were the culmination of the last decade and more. Following this it almost feels as though Marvel is going to be in rebuild mode, which will involve introducing a good number of heroes that we haven’t seen yet and bringing them together in the same clandestine manner that was used in the first few phases of the MCU. That being the case though Marvel is going to have to do some pretty fancy moving and shifting in order to keep from repeating the same formula and possibly losing viewers. The DCEU on the other hand has already started the process of bringing their own style, as James Hunt of ScreenRant points out, to the big screen in their own way this time as they’ve finally disregarded the same formula that they were attempting to copy. While Marvel is busy building back to another crescendo, the DCEU can ride the wave it’s already been on to the box office and possibly capitalize in 2020 before Marvel can turn the corner, thereby putting up much more impressive numbers and finally outpacing the MCU in a big and very decisive way. Whether they’ll be able to sustain that is hard to tell, but all in all it does feel as though they might have the chance to pull ahead in the coming year, at least for a little bit. But we’ll see.