So, they tell me there will be a new Batman movie. The fact that this has been spoken about in hushed and uncertain tones for nearly four years now has not escaped me, and although I want a new Batman movie more than anything else in the DC universe, they have let me down so many times. If we look at the current DCEU, there isn’t a wealth of positive to be passed around. Before I jump into the purpose of this article, I first want to pay homage where it is due.
When it comes to the DC universe, I am really only interested in the Bat universe. The other characters in the universe have never really spoken to me. I have never cared for Superman in that he is the be all/end all of characters and is pretty black and white when it comes to character development. This is one of the reasons why I enjoyed 2013’s Man of Steel so much. I know that there were issues with the film, especially when we look at the collateral damage he caused, but I still think that Henry Cavill was a great cast. Also, I loved that Snyder made him feel like a three-dimensional character. There were issues with some of the writing, but that can be said for all of the DC movies to an extent.
If we look through the rest of the films in the current DCEU, the casting has been pretty great. Gal Godot is a spot on Wonder Woman and she carries that helm with all the necessary clout to make her feel both unbelievably strong and also sensual in the right aspects. Wonder Woman is probably, at this point, the strongest movie in the DCEU as of now.
I loved the casting of Jason Momoa as Aquaman because I love the surfer-bro feel they chose to embody. That character was always going to be hard to translate to the screen but James Wan did a wonderful job of embracing the cheese and still delivering something fun. It might not have been the best movie ever but I loved it and it was just so much fun.
If we look at Suicide Squad, I have already said a ton of that in my review here. I liked the casting of everyone except Deadshot, but only because I think Will Smith is just too damn likeable to be Deadshot. The movie was rough, with terrible writing and editing, but the cast carried it through, especially the amazing performance by Viola Davis.
Batman vs Superman and Justice League are movies that both suffer from identity crises. BvS has moments that are great, but it seems as though Warner Bros wanted to do what Marvel was able to achieve but in reverse. Looking at the movie, they try to introduce far too many characters and information into a movie that, if we are being honest, should probably have been another hour in length or cut into two films to deal with the overexposure of content. Also, they cut out some seriously important information about Darkseid and his control over Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor which would have made 90% of the film so much better. Lastly, why the hell would you hinge the entire point of the film on the name Martha? The idea makes sense in that it leaves a spot for Batman to view Superman as human but…just…it is such a stupid choice and it made the scene ridiculous rather than revelatory.
Justice League was its own brand of awful with writing that felt like it came from two people…oh wait…that is because it did. If you are like me and a fan of Joss Whedon, you can immediately tell where his influence is felt in the film. If you aren’t aware, after some personal issues, Zack Snyder had to step away, and WB brought in Whedon to shoulder finishing the movie. What we got was a fairly disjointed movie that never really paid off and held only a mediocre villain as the main antagonist. Also, keeping with DCEU movies, the CGI looked horrendous in a lot of areas. After reading up on the many iterations of the script for Justice League, I am saddened of what we could have had if the studio would have allowed 1) it to be two movies or 2) allowed Snyder to complete his vision. I don’t have enough time here to explain everything that was slated to happen but if you do a quick search, you will find out all about what Snyder wanted Justice League to be. It will break your heart.
Now you may be wondering why I added this unbearably long intro to a fancasting but I wanted you to understand how much I love the Bat universe. Also, I wanted you to see that I do genuinely enjoy the DC movies although I know that they could be SO MUCH BETTER. This fan casting will be focused solely on the Bat family. If you want to see my thoughts on Batman’s Rogue Gallery, there are three rather large articles (here, here and here) where I discuss 27 different villains.
One last note: I LOVE Ben Affleck as Batman. I say that to what I am sure is a chorus of boos but hear me out. My favorite iteration of Batman in the comics is the iconic Dark Knight Returns from Frank Miller. I like the angry, paranoid, mountain-of-a-man that is Miller’s Batman. He is violent and has grown tired of the idiotic pandering to criminals who don’t deserve it. Affleck’s portrayal is almost spot on, other than the occasionally terrible jokes that the writers have him crack. Also, physically Affleck is huge, towering over most Hollywood types at 6’4”, with a huge barrel chest. He is also a pretty great actor and if you look at his most recent decade of work, it has been incredible. Affleck is the victim of some pretty terrible writing which has sullied what should have been a landmark role for him and it hurts me. In this fancasting, even if I enjoy the actor who currently plays them or has in the past, I will recast all.
So just who will David cast as Batman and his flock of Robins? Or Batgirl? Or, more importantly, Alfred?! Come back tomorrow to find out.
Find David on Twitter @theDavidMAmes