Commentary: Ben Affleck Will Be [Insert Your Words Here] Batman

– by Gig Patta

BenAffleckCropped Ben Affleck will be a great Batman.

Ben Affleck will be a horrible Batman.

Ben Affleck will be an okay Batman.

Ben Affleck will be a meh Batman.

After 48 hours since the news broke that Ben Affleck is the new Batman, people are still debating over this controversial move by Warner Brothers.

So far, the instant reaction is mostly negative on Twitter and Reddit just a tad more receptive. Even on Latino-Review, the writing staff can’t even agree on whether this is a good move or not.

Our own El Mayimbe went on Schmoes Know’s Thursday night podcast to discuss Affleck being chosen as Batman. And yours truly, I went on a television show in Fresno to review the latest weekend movies, but the host wanted to talk about Ben Affleck instead.

So comic book fans or non-comic book fans, it’s kind of a big deal.

How did Warner Brothers reach this decision?

It all started back in February.

Remember our scoop master El Mayimbe tweeted earlier this year that Affleck was approached to direct and play Batman? It made some news in fanboy circles.

In yesterday’s The Hollywood Reporter’s Heat Vision, it was confirmed that the studio, Christopher Nolan and Zack Snyder considered Affleck after the completion of “Man of Steel.” Sources told THR that actors Josh Brolin and Ryan Gosling were also possibilities as Batman.

It was unclear about the negotiation process between Affleck and Warner Brothers. Many of the executives were in the dark about this move. After the dust settled, Affleck has been signed for multiple movies with the possibilities of Affleck may direct some of them.

And with the ink barely dry on the contract, Affleck has already begun his intense workout plan for 2015’s movie “Superman Versus Batman.”

Affleck Can Be a Horrible Batman

Great stars can end up as a bust.

Do you remember George Clooney was once thought to be a possible good Batman in Joel Schumacher’s “Batman & Robin?” Perhaps Ryan Reynolds will be a good in “Green Lantern.” Or Megan Fox will be a terrific April O’Neil in “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.” Okay, we’ll reserve any judgments on Fox until that movie appears in theaters.

The negative reaction towards a mega-star like Affleck isn’t necessarily a bash on Affleck himself. Sure he donned a mask as a blind superhero in 2003’s “Daredevil.” And that ranked as one of the worst superhero movies of all time. Director Mark Steven Johnson was largely to blame for the failures of that movie.

Some fans do believe that Affleck had his chance—and he blew it. And had other subpar movies like “Gigli,” and “Surviving Christmas.”

These movies were made like more than a decade ago, but the people still remember these movies. Now that’s a lasting impression.

And then finally, Affleck wasn’t really on anyone’s minds as the top five or top ten choices to be the next Batman. There may be thoughts that Brolin, Karl Urban, Joe Manganiello or even Jon Hamm could be the next Batman. Very few people would come out and say that Affleck is the number choice for this role.

One thing for sure, Christian Bale’s Batman has raised the bar pretty high for Affleck. Henry Cavill’s Superman just needed to be a bit better than Brandon Routh’s version in “Superman Returns.” Any actor following Bale’s Batman will have a tough time regardless.

Affleck Could a Good Batman

The number one defense for Affleck is to remember Heath Ledger as The Joker or Daniel Craig as James Bond. Those two actors were highly criticized during the announcements at the time. Now there’s no debate about it.

Affleck’s acting skills have improved in the past decade with his own roles with “The Town” and “Argo,” which he directed. And he may even be a great complement as a second director to Snyder for the Superman sequel.

Admit or not, Affleck does bring star power for the movie rather than a no name or rising star for Batman. With the announcement alone, Affleck’s name recognition caused a debate in every type of audiences—comic book fans or not. The year 2015 is still two years away, but it’ll definitely generate the much needed buzz for the movie-going audiences.

And finally, the sequel’s focus is still on Superman—not Batman. This is a sequel to the “Man of Steel” and not a follow up to Christopher Nolan’s Batman franchise. Just pretend it is Affleck’s tryout phase as Batman. If he does a good job, then he will be promoted into a new Batman franchise and the Justice League movie.

Let the Final Product Will Be the Final Judgment

In the end, it will come down to David S. Goyer’s screenplay and Zack Snyder’s directing for the success of Affleck’s Batman. We know there’ll be plenty of action. Warner Brothers and Nolan have less than two years to figure it out. So let’s just wait a little longer before making a final judgment on this film.

Now who’s going to be Lex Luthor?

Film Ben Affleck, Superman Versus Batman