5 Reasons Why Ben Affleck as Batman isn’t so Terrible

batman and superman movie logo

‘Old’, ‘wise’ and ‘extraordinary actor’ aren’t usually words you might equate with Ben Affleck and his acting career. But both Greg Silverman at Warner Bros. and Zack Snyder are singing his praises with the announcement of Affleck as the next in line to take up the black mantle as the world’s most beloved vigilante. The interwebz has had people losing their shit all over the place since the news broke, with a vast vocal majority pooh-poohing the decision and swearing off the sequel to Man of Steel in defiance of what they perceive to be the worst casting decision since Heath Ledger was picked for the Joker, and look at how that turned out.

But before you start rioting and leading the mob of pitchfork wielding maniacs to Warner HQ, let’s consider why this might not be such a bad decision after all…

 

1. The Dare Devil Snafu

In 2003 Affleck brought Marvel’s Matt Murdock to life in Dare Devil, lurking in rafters and prancing around rooftops in a shiny scarlet leather jumpsuit. The almost unanimous verdict was that the film was a flop, failing to deliver on all counts.

What did Affleck himself have to say about the debacle?       

“by playing a superhero in Daredevil, I have inoculated myself from ever playing another superhero… Wearing a costume was a source of humiliation for me and something I wouldn’t want to do again soon.”

Well, he soon got over that with his portrayal of George Reeves in Hollywoodland and he did a pretty nifty job.

What is benefit of all of this? Well, having acknowledged that Dare Devil didn’t quite live up to expectations, and having played a man who begrudgingly took up the role of a TV superhero, Ben Affleck has had 10 years to ponder on aforementioned humiliation and the general disdain accrued as a result, and I don’t think he’d sign up for another superhero role lightly. The evolution of the genre in that decade and gravitas we’ve come to associate with it won’t be lost on an Oscar winning writer, so it’s safe to say he’s aware of what’s expected and won’t want to be the one to destroy Nolan’s legacy.

Also there’s the added dimension of him having bedded Supes’ mummy dearest when he played opposite Diana Lane in Hollywoodland

Brace Yourselves, the Memes are Coming

2. Physical Prowess

Batman is an honorary graduate from the school of whoop ass. It wasn’t until Nolan’s take on the franchise that we really saw him dishing out serious beat downs, so it’s a given that the next actor to suit up in the cowl and cape needs to prepare themselves for a gruelling physical regime to achieve the pinnacle of physical perfection that is the Batman.

"Guys, this isn't working. Can't we just get a ripped batsuit? Maybe with some nipples...?"
“Guys, this isn’t working. Can’t we just get a ripped batsuit? Maybe with some nipples…?”

And that’s where we’re in luck. Ben Affleck trained with Cheung-Yan Yuen on Dare Devil to familiarise himself with martial arts and, admittedly, a fair amount of wire work and we all saw his magnificent torso in The Town. You could pop the Adam West bat suit on top of those abs and still end up pissing your pants if he jumped out at you in an alley. Anyone with a physique that sculpted means business. So we can be fairly confident in the assumption that Affleck’s Batman will do justice to the gritty brawler we’ve all become accustomed to.

"Guys, I got this."
“Guys, I got this.”

3. The Chin

Traditionally, Batman has always had strong jawline, emphasising just how macho he really is. Throughout the years, the cinematic portrayals of Bats have featured some big name actors – but where did they leave their chins? Even Christian Bale’s throat rending vigilante voice couldn’t distract from his slender girlish face in that abomination of a cowl.

Chin? What chin?
Chin? What chin? No chins around here…

Not quite the intimidating figure from the pages of the comics. With the exception of Adam West’s Batman, the chin area has been left wanting. But with Ben Affleck donning the iconic cowl, our days of weak chinned superheroes could be over.

 

I've got ALL the chin you need
I’ve got ALL the chin you need

4. His Age

When he took on his first superhero role, Ben Affleck was a fresh faced 31 year old – the same age as his soon-to-be Superman co-star Henry Cavill. Now he’s a grizzled 41 year old, rocking  a tux and an Oscar.

"I'm Batman!"
“I’m Batman!”

If there’s one thing Adam West’s Batman got right, it’s that Bruce Wayne works so much better on the other side of 40.

Bruce Wayne Adam West

Snyder’s Batman is to be portrayed as “older and wiser than Clark Kent and bears the scars of a seasoned crime fighter, but retain the charm that the world sees in billionaire Bruce Wayne,”. Whether you want to call it charm or sheer smugness, Affleck now has the years to pull off either, as a successful silver-haired billionaire schmoozing his way onto Clark Kent’s territory.

5. It’s a Superman Movie

The saving grace of all of this is that if Affleck truly sucks, well, it wasn’t a Batman movie. Warner can chalk it up to overeager optimism and when they roll out the next Batman or JLA movie, they can recast to their heart’s delight. Unless of course, he’s signed up for multiple films as the caped crusader…in which case, we’re screwed.

Welp, I'm still getting paid.
Welp, I’m still getting paid.

Do you think Ben Affleck can pull follow in Bale’s footsteps, or are you fashioning a torch and looking for your nearest agricultural store?

Author Gamer Girl is a podcast co-host on FrontTowardsGamer Radio.  It is highly recommended you follow her on Twitter.
Previously in Poison Popcorn: Street Trash. See previous Poison Popcorns right fucking here!

13 thoughts on “5 Reasons Why Ben Affleck as Batman isn’t so Terrible

  1. Innocent until proven guilty, I say. Lets wait for the first trailers featuring the Affleck Bat, then we can all have a nice rant. I’ll give him a chance.
    On the subject of the chin though… sorry but thats a soft rounded baby chin.

  2. I think people would be mad about anyone but Bale coming back to play him. I personally liked Josh Brolin better, but Affleck isn’t a bad choice. I don’t think it will be as dark as the Nolan Batman, but it can’t be worse than Batman and Robin.

  3. Good article. I was mad at this news yesterday, but then I start thinking what does Ben Affleck has to offer to the role. He is not a bad actor, especially if he is well directed (he is no Bale, but is not that bad), He is in good shape and he has a great chin for the role. The classy and smart part of the role is probably more difficult to imagine, but a good enough paycheck, and the possibility of more of them, is a great motivation to work hard in your acting skills…

  4. I’m mostly fine with the casting after some reflection, but the writing will probably kill the movie. Here’s hoping he directs Justice League and gets some competent writers involved.

  5. the worst part about all of this is that now i’m going to have to constantly hear about how great Bale was. word up guys, he was pretty shit.

  6. you know… ultimately i’m fine with affleck playing batman.
    i honestly don’t feel like a superman/batman movie was necessary though, same for a JLA movie.
    i don’t think a justice league movie would have worked the same as an avengers film, but i DO think they should be doing something with wonder woman now, if they intend on going in the JLA direction.
    but i think putting supes and bats in the same movie is going to be so much of a challenge for the writers that we’re going to end up with a fuster cluck of a movie.
    and ben affleck will give it his all, and cry a whole lot and stuff as always, but i think this movie isn’t going to work very well.
    I don’t know if a 2 hour movie is really enough time to play to each character’s strengths individually and then bring the two together to create and further the united strength.
    they have two really different approaches to solving problems and unless the writer(s) REALLY understand the characters, we’re going to end up with two very unusual characterisations of these guys.
    i’m worried that hollywood will just have them punching stuff back to back for an hour and a half.
    i don’t know, i don’t even care about these franchises.
    whatever hollywood, have fun with it.

  7. I actually have never understood why Americans are so hung up into hating Ben Affleck so much in the first place. Sure, he has been in some shitty movies, but what actor hasn’t? And by contrast, he’s pretty fucking good more often than not, not just as a director, but as an actor. Just like Anne Hathaway, Ryan Reynolds, and Heath Ledger, he seems to get an unfair amount of shit for only one or couple of standout bad movies while ignoring their actual skill.

    So yeah, I’m pretty fucking fine with him playing Batman, specially because I can definitely see him as both batman AND Bruce Wayne. Something I couldn’t say about Brolin. (He’s make a great Batman, but doesn’t have the kind of face and attitude to ´portray a convincing Bruce Wayne. Not to Mention that he’s too old.)

    I’m just kinda sad that there’s so many articles like these popping up all over, having to defend Affleck because a bunch of idiots threw a tantrum so harshly, so quickly. Specially because what’s worrying about this Batman VS Superman isn’t Ben Affleck in the least… It’s fucking David S. Goyer. He fucks up almost everything he writes or directs, and I’m pretty fucking sure he’s a big reason why Man of Steel sucked. Yet people aren’t raging about HIM >_>

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