Batman: What we want out of Ben Afleck’s version
The Batman DC has had their fair shares of hit and misses when it comes to Bruce Wayne/Batman. Throughout the character’s history fans have been treated to the success of Michael Keaton, Adam West, and Christian Bale. However, for every Bale, there’s been a Val Kilmer or George Clooney. With so much in doubt with the future of the DCEU, Warner Bros. needs all the success out of Ben Affleck’s iteration as they can get. So what’s been missing out of your favorite caped vigilante that we’d like to see more of?
Villains: One of the strongest assets of the Batman franchise is its long list of villains. Not only does the history include greats like the Joker, but so many others such as Riddler or Scarecrow have hardly been touched. Personally with special effects in today’s cinema hitting an all-time high, seeing the visual effects needed to bring Scarecrow’s fear toxin to life would catapult the villain into an instant classic. Even with the Riddler, the only version we’ve been treated to was Jim Carrey’s goofy yet fun version that was a perfect fit for the 90s. Today’s audiences need to be treated to a more intelligently obsessive version of the character.
Selina Kyle: If there ever was a character in the DC universe the movies have yet to get right, it’s Catwoman. Each film has often cast whichever “it girl” who’s hot in Hollywood to fill the role. Too often they’ve failed to capture the true essence of the character and her connection to Bruce Wayne/Batman. Kyle is arguably one of the strongest relationships to Bruce Wayne in the comics and the movies have often treated it as strangers passing in the night. The movies need to correct this oversight and dive head on into Batman’s inner workings rather than just a crime fighter.
Bruce Wayne: Speaking of Batman’s inner workings, Bruce Wayne has been through tragedy after tragedy in the comics. With the tease of the death of Robin in Batman v Superman, we start to see the toll these tragedies have taken on his psyche. Plenty of Batman films have explored the charm and wit of Bruce Wayne, but never the relationships he’s had in the comics. However, they’ve barely scratched the surface of Bruce Wayne, the intelligent, billionaire, playboy. People pay to see Batman but if you want to build the emotional connection to the audience, its time to explore the connection to Batgirl, Nightwing, and Robin both in and out of costume. Focus on the relationship between Bruce and Alfred. Audiences need to feel as close to the character as they do in the comics.
WayneTech: One of the up sides of BvS was the expansion of Batman’s fighting. Using tech and the environment around him lead to one of the best scenes in the movie. The solo project can use a boost in that area as well. Bruce is a man of many talents and seemingly infinite amounts of cash but the most we’ve seen is a grappling hook and countless adjustments to his means of transportation. One of comics greatest detective and barely see any detective work. The movies could add a nice homage to the past if written in well. As long as it doesn’t take away from the central plot it would bring the tremendous amount of history to the newer audiences.
If Warner Bros and DC want The Batman to be successful, they don’t have to research a ton. One of the most-complete versions of the character has been found on gaming consoles. Batman’s Arkham franchise not only created compelling stories, it paid tribute to past characters, expanded the city of Gotham beyond the focus of one villain, and kept the balance of Bruce Wayne’s abilities in check. Not only was it showed off his crime fighting abilities but we also got to see his detective work and wide scope of his detective skills. Too many times in a Batman film, fighting has been the focus. It’s time to pay tribute to the character’s origin while engaging the newer era of fans. Moving forward, that’ll be the biggest challenge facing the future film. Between the comics having years of history and the expansion of the character beyond the pages, there’s enough history to make Batman films for decades. Moving forward the DCEU needs to stop trying to come up with original ideas for the character and pull from his past.