When I first heard that there will be a “Batman versus “Superman” movie, the cynical side of me (which some may claim takes up a healthy proportion of my attitude) had a fairly negative reaction. “It’s going to suck,” I thought. Then when they announced that the new Dark Knight was going to be played by Ben Affleck, that seemed to reinforce my cynicism.
But the comic book nerd and Batman fanatic in me was super excited. I mean, ever since the 1989 Tim Burton Batman movie, I have been a fan. And I don’t think I was the only one who wanted to see Batman take on Superman, especially after reading Frank Miller’s “Dark Knight Returns.”
Fitting Supes into Burton’s world may have worked. I’m glad they didn’t bother wasting a cool story with Joel Schumacher’s horrendous take on the character (I mean, who will ever forgive him for “Bat-Nipples”). And putting Superman into Christopher Nolan’s brilliant trilogy (“Batman Begins,” “Dark Knight” and “Dark Knight Rises”) never would have made sense. But with “Man of Steel” and Zack Snyder (who directed “The Watchmen” which I enjoyed) the time seems right with this. DC has had the re-imagining of the Batman franchise while Nolan was still working on his third film of the trilogy.
With Marvel now creating their universe (minus X-Men due to another studio owning those rights) and the success of “The Avengers,” there was no question Warner Brothers was going to push for something similar with the Justice League.
When I heard that they aired a special clip at the recent Comic Con in San Diego, I spent a better part of my day off that Saturday trying to find any video of it. I did. And it looked great. It Batman, sporting the armor suit from “Dark Knight Returns” summons Supes with the Bat-signal. I’m glad my wife was at work when I saw this, because I’m pretty sure my enthusiasm would have disturbed her. No woman should see her husband that happy about comic book characters.
And since Nolan’s trilogy ended, DC has been getting whipped by Marvel. Face it, “Green Lantern” was a failure and the attempted reboot of Wonder Woman for television was canceled before it could even air an episode. But “Arrow” has been, thus far, and the upcoming “Flash,” there is some promise.
A lot of complaints have been toward DC’s tendency to make these projects dark and gritty and in the vein of what Nolan did. It worked for “Arrow” basically because Oliver Queen and Bruce Wayne have many similarities. I haven’t seen “Man Of Steel” yet, but I’ve read they did the grit on him too. I happen to like the dark and gritty takes on comic characters, but whatever.
So, as more info and images keep on coming out, I think I can rest a little easier with this project. Because, really? Nobody can do worse than Joel Schumacher. His films were what the creatures at the bottom of the barrel feed upon.
Here is Rifftrax (guys from Mystery Science Theater 3000) making fun of “Batman And Robin.” Enjoy.