It may be one of the greatest movies of all time, but it ain’t got nothing on the caped crusader.
In 1975, an eager young director by the name of Steven Spielberg directed a film called Jaws. You may have heard of it! It’s about a bunch of mean guys who decide to take on a beautiful shark, and was single handedly responsible for a) making sure everyone was afraid of going in the water for a real long time and b) making sure Steven Spielberg became one of the biggest names in Hollywood. Seriously, that guy’s headed for big things.
The most seductive Spielberg image I could find.
If you haven’t seen it, what the frig – Go watch it! It’s a great movie that changed a few things in cinema, both in the way tension and suspense can be approached on the big screen and in the way films are released, allowing for films to be successful based on marketing and hype rather than lowly things like “reviews” and “critical response.”
Everyone knows a film’s value is based on how many awards it wins, specifically Oscars. Why even bother making a film if it’s not gonna have some gold naked statue validating it’s existence? This allows memorable films like Crash to earn their place in Hollywood history.
As a result, you’d expect a classic film like Jaws to have an Oscar right? Well, it does. It won three in fact! Good job, animatronic shark.
No one’s gonna play him off the stage.
You know what else won three Oscars? BATMAN.
“I’d like to thank my pare- oh wait…”
Yes, that’s right, across his film career the caped crusader won three Academy Awards, one for Batman (1989) and two for The Dark Knight.
“But Cooper,” you exclaim aloud to your computer screen, “presumably those awards were for dumb technical awards, not anything actually important!” Well, you’re mostly right, internet commenter! Batman won for Best Art Direction, and Dark Knight won for Best Sound Editing and, of course, Best Supporting Actor for Heath Ledger’s Joker.
So, surely Jaws won for some more important awards than that, right? Well, let’s see:
The “Best Shark” category had not yet been implemented.
Ooooh snap, Jawsy! Those look like a couple of dumb technical awards to me! Of course, that’s one memorable score (you know it as the one that goes “da-dun da-dun da-dun da-dun”), but I’m pretty sure Batman’s got you beat on the Oscar front.
But seriously though, awards are no way to measure a film’s success, we need to look at how positively the films are received with their audience. And what better way to do this than with the calm, rational userbase of IMDB?
If you add all of Batman’s scores up it skews the numbers EVEN FURTHER in my favour.
Yes, that’s right, the three most recent Batman films all rank higher in the IMDB top 250 than the beloved Jaws. Take that, Sharky!
Even mathematically, Batman beats this good for nothing shark, with 75% of his eight live-action theatrical films being “pretty decent or better”, as opposed to 25% of Jaw’s’s’s. You can’t dispute MATHS because that’s SCIENCE.
So just why is Batman clearly superior to Jaws in every possible way? One simple reason: Batman ain’t afraid of no sharks.
The basic plot of Jaws is that a few dead bodies are found, mauled by sharks and/or shark related paraphernalia. Instead of bringing in Sharky and George to solve this mystery, and missing out on the best crossover in history, we follow Brody, Hooper and Quint as they hunt down a man-eating Great White Shark.
A lot of tension comes from the fact that sharks are dangerous! Those majestic kings of the ocean will fuck you up. How will these brave men face such a dangerous foe? I mean, a WHOLE shark?
Meanwhile, Batman lives with a giant scary robot dinosaur in his house.
Oh hai guys!
It’s not really a fair comparison – one is a fairly realistic thriller (plastic shark aside,) whereas one is a modern fantasy with sci-fi elements. But who ever said this was a fair comparison? If we’re basing the tension of Jaws on the threat of a big scary shark, then Batman is a rollercoaster of suspense, as that guy fights sharks ALL THE TIME.
That last one’s not official, but too awesome not to include.
Even the “silly” version of Batman, the 1966 Adam West movie, has Batman fight a shark, a famous scene in which ol’ Bats uses shark repellent spray to vanquish the threat until it explodes. The entire plot of Jaws is condensed into the opening scene of Batman, because he’s THAT AWESOME.
Still about as realistic as the Jaws shark.
Spielberg claims he named the shark in Jaws “Bruce” after his lawyer, but I think we all know who it’s really named after – the only man who has proven time and time again that he is the only logical match, physically and mentally, for a Great White Shark – Mr Bruce Wayne.
I do not wish to diminish the importance of Jaws, which I believe to be one of the most important films of the 20th century. But Batman’s utility belt will always contain enough tricks, including shark repellent spray, to ensure he has the edge.
In Batman we trust.
CAST YOUR VOTE FOR JAWS VS BATMAN ON AMAZON!!