Holy Smokes Batman!

Thursday, March 10, 2022

The Batman is out now and it's got me thinking about all the past cinematic Batmans. The Batman was a good film noir, but he was still in the tradition of the grim dark that has encompassed Batman stories of over the last couple of decades. It's almost like a competition to see how grim dark they can take the character. Also literally dark, to where you can't really see what's happening on the screen. And on top of that, since The Dark Knight, each Batman and movie he has been in has gotten progressively dour. Somebody at Warner Brothers or DC needs to be brave and bold and take Batman into a whole new direction. 

There are a few different directions I would like to see Batman go in.

One is very simple: find a different kind of villain to be the antagonist. No more Banes or Jokers wanting the destruction of Gotham. Don't even repeat some of the villains from the older movies. Go to the comics and find a character from the rogues gallery that may not be as well known to the general public. Nothing shakes things up like new blood.

The second direction is to go full camp. Just go back to the style of the original Adam West show and update it for the 21st Century. Be fun and funny and bring color back to Batman. It is inherently ridiculous that a playboy decides to spend his wealth to dress up as a bat to "save the city" instead of donating it to charities or funding his own. Let's be real, Gotham really needs that money.

The third direction, and the one I hope that is taken, is put Batman into a 1940s film noir. The Batman is film noir, but I want classic Hollywood film noir. He is essentially a private investigator, and he's got quite the number of femme fatales, with Catwoman clearly on top. Have him actually be the world's greatest detective and make him solve a crime. Less brawling, more sleuthing. He should have plenty of rogues that aren't super powered, let's seem him go toe to toe with a regular human criminal mastermind. You want to be super stylish, film it in black and white with all the angles and hallmarks of a true film noir. 

I don't see why Batman needs to remain this one thing when he has a varied history. Why do we have to keep telling the same kind of stories about him? Is is just that people think that only one kind of Batman story can be told anymore? Or is it that the studios are trying to appease fans with what they want, and keep going further and further into the darkness with no sign of light?

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