Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted. I wasn’t entirely certain I wanted to keep doing AZM on the regular. But then someone came up to me at SPX and said they’ve been reading this horrible thing since high school (WHAT THE WHAT) so I will endeavor to do my best to bring my take to all the nerdy shit that’s going on. It won’t be pretty, but that’s not what you come here for. So let’s get back into it starting with the news that Ben Affleck is going to play Batman in the sequel to Superman: Man of Steel.
To be honest, I didn’t nerd rage nearly as hard as some of my friends. At this point, I don’t care who plays Batman. Though I thought he was really compelling in Batman Begins, by the time The Dark Knight came around, I was getting sick of Christian Bale’s weird Batvoice. I found Heath Ledger to be much more interesting. And in the third installment, I found the surrounding characters much more interesting than Batman. Batman is more of an idea, a force of nature, than any one character. The Bat himself somehow became the least interesting part of the franchise. I was drawn in because of the way he affected the lives and loves around him. The Bat doesn’t matter as much as the way he touches the lives around him. So in that view, really anyone could put on the suit.
Superman/Batman must deal with a more fundamental problem that reared its ugly head in Man of Steel. Max Landis does a brilliant job of articulating my biggest problem with the movie:
For me to give any shits about the sequel, Superman needs to answer for the destruction of Smallville and Metropolis. I’ve heard the argument that these are his first two big fights so he hasn’t quite figured out the best way to punch villains without destroying towns. I suppose that’s true. But they spent the entire first act of the film showing us how much Clark cares about humanity, how far he’s willing to go to save people. And yet when it comes to punchy time, he suddenly forgets that there are innocents near by?
No. That is not the character they set up. That is not Superman.
I think the second film needs to deal with this and I think it would be a great way to introduce Lex Luthor. I could easily see Lex coming in and saying something like, “Do you see the destruction this so-called savior caused? He’s no hero! He’s a monster!” And then Lexcorp swoops in to do reconstruction while Lex begins a campaign to demonize Superman. And Clark spends a good portion of the film trying to reconcile the damage he’s done. Do I stay to help protect humanity against other threats knowing that this could be the result? Do I leave and hope that they can take care of themselves? I think that could be a really interesting setup and a perfect way for Lex to make his entrance.
Or better yet, Waynecorp comes in to do reconstruction. Bruce calls up Clark and basically says, “Listen, asshole. You can punch villains without blowing up a city, you know.” Just snarks the shit out of him. If we get asshole Bruce, I really think Affleck is the guy. You remember this scene from Boiler Room?
How awesome would it be to have him bust Clark’s balls like this! Yeah, yeah, super flying powers FUCK YOU! Don’t punch villains in Metropolis! He could even do the whole “act as if” thing to Clark.
Hey fucker, act as if you’re a fucking super hero!
I don’t know which way they’re going to go with the sequel, but I hope to the comic gods that they address the destruction of Smallville and Metropolis and that Ben Affleck gets his asshole on and trolls the shit out of Clark as Bruce. Then I’ll believe DC is ready for a Justice League film.
Actually, scratch that. Smallville, Metropolis, asshole Bruce, WONDER WOMAN and THEN I’ll believe DC is ready for a Justice League film.