This past Thursday night, it was announced that Ben Affleck would be starring as Bruce Wayne. Even though 2015 is still quite some time away, it didn’t stop the masses from responding in a multitude of fashions. While one might find a few superhero fans that couldn’t care less, the vocal majority cried foul, even to the point when #BetterBatmanThanBenAffleck was trending.
The argument can be made that this hashtag is nothing short of a joke, seeing as how Tweets were made declaring Sheldon Cooper from “The Big Bang Theory” as a better alternative. As humorous as this is, it’s clear that the general consensus is Affleck isn’t the ideal choice to play Batman. His track record is not exactly spotless as far as comic book films are concerned; the only notable movie under Affleck’s belt, “Daredevil,” played a role in him earning the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actor in 2004, topping Justin Guarani in “From Justin to Kelly” and Mike Myers in “The Cat in the Hat.”
Even though Affleck’s track record could be improved, he has a string of talented performances to boast about. “The Town,” for example, was released in 2010 and not only did Affleck star in it but he also directed and co-wrote the film. It’s understandable where passionate Batman fans are coming from, especially when Christian Bale has donned the cowl respectably between 2005 and 2012. However, instead of accepting potential change, it would appear that the public immediately doubted the potential of Affleck as a comic book character brought to the silver screen.
The period between 2005 and 2012, when Christopher Nolan was at the helm of the Batman films, showed that everyone was initially optimistic about Heath Ledger portraying the Joker in “The Dark Knight.” In fact, it was thought that “10 Things I Hate About You” and “A Knight’s Tale,” amongst other movies he’s been featured in, all but solidified him as an attractive actor who couldn’t portray arguably the most important Batman villain. Once Nolan’s second Batman film reached theaters, skeptics and critics alike were silenced. The fact that Ledger could not only act as the Joker but make the role his own brings hope to the idea that Affleck can do the same under the black armor.
As any online marketing firm can predict, judging by the initial reactions of Affleck’s reveal as the next Batman, criticisms are going to remain until the film is released in 2015. It’s stunning to see just how tremendous of an outcry there was in response to the news and one has to wonder if this is going to change even after the movie hits theaters. The aforementioned case of Ledger was, in the eyes of many, lightning being caught in a bottle by an actor exceeding expectations and then some.
Will Affleck prove to be the next bolt secured?