It seems that following Kevin Smith’s heart attack in February, the writer/director/podcaster has been consistently in the news cycle. He survived the heart attack and is well on his way to a healthier lifestyle, having lost over 40 pounds. So while his life has maintained headlines in the news, his podcast Fat Man on Batman seems to frequently appear in the geek news. The show’s Q&A sessions with Smith and his co-host, Marc Bernardin, have churned out extremely thoughtful musings on various geek-related subjects.
This week, one question focused on Christian Bale’s Batman. The fan set forth a hypothetical situation in which Bale was convinced to do Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, where it was Bale’s Batman who came out of retirement to confront Superman. These are Smith’s thoughts on that alternate timeline:
“I think I would have preferred it, and this ain’t sh*tting on Affleck. But as a guy who loved the Nolan trilogy, when they announced [that] they’re making a Man of Steel and Chris Nolan’s a producer on it, I was like, ‘Oh f**k, man. So that means that his Batman and his Superman will coexist.’ And then ultimately, it wound up being Zack Snyder’s Batman instead. I would have preferred the Christian Bale version just as the continuity freak. Yeah, all these f**kers are connected!
What does everyone b*tch about DC movies doing? ‘Oh, they’re trying to be Marvel. They can’t catch up to Marvel.’ They had it, right there! They [could have been] like, ‘We’ve been making these f**king Batman movies forever, so now we’re just going to connect them. And guess what? We got a universe.’ But instead, they just launched a brand new universe.
You can go a long way on sentimentality and affection. And we all loved those f**king Nolan movies, so the bar was already set high. If you were like, ‘Hey, these are our continuation of those movies. And he’s only going to work a certain amount, he’s not going to be in every scene, but it’s your Batman from the last 10 years.’ That would been f**king very, very smart.”
“The wiser decision?”
Bernardin eventually adds that, “Not only that, but then it becomes an emotional story. It becomes the ‘What makes this guy give up happiness?’ …Given that he retired, what’s enough to pull this guy away from the dream that he’s always had? …What brings that guy to put the suit back on?”
Both men seem to agree that the story could have simply proceeded from as is, with the destruction of Metropolis and the deaths of several Wayne employees. Smith is quick to add that this is no slight against Batfleck, but that this simply would have been the wiser decision.
You can see their discussion here: (Beware of uncensored potty language!)
While I was always indifferent to Bale’s portrayal of Batman, I have to admit that this would have likely made for a better movie universe. Personally, I do believe that Batfleck is the best live-action Batman we’ve had thus far, but this would have been the smarter choice. It was kind of unintentionally set up for that as well, where the mythical Batman appeared after a long absence. It could do with a little tweaking, but it would still work.
Hate to admit it, but if Bale did return, maybe WB/DC wouldn’t have been in this mess. Or maybe, they still would have. I can’t imagine that the visionary Zack Snyder would have wanted to work under the constraints of somebody else’s interpretation. Snyder seems like he likes to create his own stuff.
Well, the past has passed and no matter how much we speculate, we are still in a world where the DC movie universe is in great danger.
What do you think? Would continuing the story of Bale’s Batman fix DC’s problems?