After months of anticipation, and waiting, and hoping, and to some degree praying, we finally got a well and true Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice trailer. In case you forgot what it was, here it is.
Once I saw this (in its true form, not the bootleg version), I knew this movie was going to be something special. Not just for the whole “It’s Batman AND Superman on screen together!” thing, but because I can tell that Zack Snyder is trying to tell both a Batman story and a Superman story in one film.
And yet, almost true to form, I have seen people make very harsh statements about the movie trailer. “It’s too dark!”, “Clearly Superman is reigning over humanity, which is something Superman doesn’t do!!!”, or my personal favorite, “Why would Batman ask Superman if he bleeds? Then say he would? That’s not Batman!”
It’s hard to tell what exactly people are thinking when they make such statements, but to me? It just doesn’t make sense, especially given all that’s happened in the last few years in regards to movie and TV shows.
So allow me to state why I’m excited for the movie, and why certain people’s views are conflicting with what not only may happen, but with what has happened before.
1. It’s a true continuation of Man of Steel.
Full disclosure, I LOVED Man of Steel. I thought it was a great film with a great story. One that honestly depicts a modern age Superman, and the struggle our world would have in accepting him.
And even though Batman v Superman isn’t a “true” sequel, it does pick up on a lot of the groundwork that was laid out in Man of Steel. The trailer itself shows a world divided on its opinion of Superman. On one hand, there is the people who are grateful to him for what he has done/is doing now, to the extent that they built a statue in his honor. Some are even going so far as to call him a savior or a deity.
Then there’s the other half, who still see him as a threat. Remember, in Man of Steel, the military was happy to give Superman over to Zod. They didn’t care. Then, when he SAVED THE WORLD, they tried to follow him and figure out who he “truly was.” Superman held out an olive branch. Some took it, and some obviously didn’t. And that hatred of him will probably be what leads Batman to fighting with him for one reason or another.
“But Todd,” you say, “Superman doesn’t consider himself a deity! Nor would Batman just fight him because the world doesn’t understand who Superman is!”
And you’re right. Superman doesn’t see himself as a deity, far from it in fact. He doesn’t lord over people, he believes in being one of the people of whom he is protecting. The thing you’re jumping to though is that Superman considers himself above humanity in the film. He doesn’t, Man of Steel showed that in many ways. He’s as human as he is Kryptonian. For me, this gets proven in the 0:22 second mark of the trailer. When numerous people are reaching out to him, he’s looking away with a sad expression on his face. Or at least, I perceive it that way.
As for Batman, yeah, he wouldn’t just fight Superman for no good reason, but then again, this is Batman, and we don’t know what this Batman is like in this universe. Don’t think for a second though that Batman wouldn’t beat up Superman for simply being in his way. That’s exactly what happened in the World’s Finest animated crossover between Batman and Superman. Superman tried to tell Batman how to do his job, and Batman subsequently put Superman through a table. Then he used Kryptonite to weaken him before leaving.
2. The Batman Question
This is easily the thing I’m most excited for. No, not just because it’s Batman, but because it’s a new Batman; one that’s guaranteed to be different from the other versions in one way or the other.
Each man that dons the Batman suit, whether in live-action or animation, gives their own take on the character. After what happened with George Clooney, we were scared of what the next Batman would be. Then along comes Christian Bale, and we were in love.
Now there’s Ben Affleck, who was at first reviled by the fan community when it was announced he was Batman I’ll admit, that was my first reaction too, but after hearing about what Affleck said in regards to getting the role, and wanting to make this truly special, I have faith in him. Oh, and that was before I saw the two Batsuits!
The suits are a testament to Batman’s ability to adapt to a situation as need be. While I wouldn’t go so far as to say the armored Batsuit was made especially for Superman, though I wouldn’t be surprised if that was indeed the case, it does show he has gone to great lengths to make sure he’s prepared for super powerful opponents. Possibly like Bane? Just saying.
“But Todd,” you cry out, “Did you see the scenes where he apparently has a gun? Or is glaring angrily at the Batsuit? They’re channeling The Dark Knight Returns too much!”
While I can agree with parts of that, that’s not a guarantee. As comes with the territory, there is going to be crossover in regards to the material for both the comics and the live-action, or even cartoon versions, of Batman. For example, I saw a lot of Michael Keaton in the Christian Bale Batman, and some of the cartoons pulled straight from the comics for some of their inspiration. It’s part of the game!
Yes, we do see Batman with a gun, but we don’t know what purpose that gun has. For all we know, it’s a long range tranq gun that Batman uses to get perps without having to beat them up too badly.
That’s the thing, we don’t know the mindset of this Batman. There have been teases, and little bits of information on how things have gone in his life, but we don’t know for sure. Until then, it’s all a big mystery.
3. The Rest of the Cast
Justifiably so, the main focus on the trailer was Batman and Superman. However, there were teases of other characters in the voice-over for the trailer, such as Jesse Eisenberg’s Lex Luthor, which brings the overall question of, “What will happen with the rest of the cast?”
To make this a truly successful movie, it can’t just be about the fight. This is mainly because we know that it’s going to “end” with the heroes beginning to trust each other, or at least enough to work together and form the inevitable Justice League. Yes, the fight is important, but so is the buildup to it and its resolution.
How do Batman and Superman officially meet? Where does Bruce Wayne come into all this? What effect will Lex Luthor have on all of this? What about Lois Lane? Where does she come in? Those questions and more have me excited for what we will see, especially when more trailers come out.
“But Todd,” you holler oh so loudly, “How can you be excited when this movie has too many characters! Why can’t they just focus on the core Superman and Batman characters!?”
Honestly? I hope the movie isn’t crowded because that would hurt the overall product. However, though Wonder Woman, Aquaman, and Cyborg are confirmed to be in the movie, we don’t know how long they’re going to be “in” the movie! Honestly, I would be very surprised if the combined minutes for all three of these characters would be above 10 minutes. The only one that I could see having a significant role in the film is Cyborg, as we’ll see him as Vincent Stone first. Wonder Woman would be a close second, but they can’t just throw her into all of this without cause. Otherwise, it’ll feel forced.
In the end, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is set to be a movie that will wow us on numerous levels. Yes, we are right to have some reservations based on the first trailer, but remember, it’s the first trailer! Enjoy it, and enjoy when we get more to see. We’re less than a year away from the release. We’re going to get more, and hopefully it’ll be both the movie we want, and the movie we deserve.