It’s safe to say that Warner Bros. latest attempt at bridging the gulf between DC and Marvel Cinematic Universes didn’t quite work out the way they hoped. While Ben Affleck’s portrayal of the Dark Knight garnered positive reviews, fans were less than impressed with his alter ego’s (or should I say amalgamation of alter egos) in the 2016 movie Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice.
The film’s biggest problem, which led to its mixed reviews and underperformance at the box office, was that it was incredibly confusing as to which Batman and Superman characters were supposed to be meeting for the first time. This is primarily due to the fact that the MCU’s Batman and Superman have completely different backstories and personalities.
While it would have been nice to see Batman and Superman team up to fight a common enemy, the film’s creative team decided there and then to essentially retcon both characters’ solo movie incarnations. This resulted in a mishmash of the same scenes, but with different plot points and characterizations. It’s a bold move, but one that paid off commercially, as both Batman and Christian Bale’s Batman stand out as some of the most memorable characters in years.
While the reception to the film could be termed as mixed, fans of both franchises have found more solace in the comics medium, particularly with the release of the just announced Volume 4 of the Batman: The Animated Series, which will be based on the events of Dawn of Justice. This is largely thanks to a standout performance by actor Robert Pattinson, who seemingly inhabits the role of Batman with ease, as seen in the newly released clip below.
Robert Pattinson Rips
Set to the tune of “We Want Miles” by Radiohead, the clip shows Batman surveying his new environs with a mixture of excitement and horror. It’s a powerful scene, as the Dark Knight contemplates the situation he’s in, and how far he’s willing to go to protect the innocent. His gaze settles on a nearby car, which he then proceeds to kick, dent, and otherwise beat up.
The Dark Knight then gets into a fist fight with an unidentified man, before chasing down another, smaller figure that he manages to save. It’s an impressive sequence, as the camera lingers on the actor’s face as he brings his martial arts skills to bear in an attempt to protect those he considers to be under threat. The small figure turns out to be Robin, who’s now donned the cowl and cape of the Dark Knight.
The fight scenes in the upcoming Batman: The Animated Series Vol. 4 are also going to be memorable, particularly the one that sees Batman square off against a giant, tentacled monster. While the clip is a little light on narrative, especially compared to some of the other clips released thus far, it does provide some indication as to what sort of threats Batman and Robin will be facing in the coming months. This also marks the first time director Christopher Niemann has worked with the Caped Crusader, having previously helmed episodes of Teen Titans Go! and The Batman.
This isn’t the first time that Batman and Robin have squared off against monster-like assailants either, as the Dynamic Duo have previously battled Frankenstein’s monster and El Chupacabra. This year alone, they’ll be facing off against various creatures from the Alien, Predator, and Doctor Who universes, as well as classic comic book foes like The Joker and The Riddler.
The success of Batman: The Animated Series, which aired from 1992-1997, is often cited as one of the chief reasons why the Caped Crusader never turned up in live action until 2014’s The Dark Knight Rises. Not only does it offer a glimpse into the early years of Batman’s career, it serves as a microcosm of the entire comic book medium. This is especially evident in the form of a battle royal between various adversaries that sees the Dark Knight prove his might, and perhaps more importantly, his willingness to go the extra mile to protect the innocent. Indeed, this is something that’s sorely missing from the MCU, with their Batman and Superman bickering over who has the greater will and moral compass. It would appear that the filmmakers behind the upcoming Justice League have finally gotten the message.