Patton Oswalt may be one of the few people defending Ben Affleck’s casting as Batman.
When word broke last week that Affleck would be donning the Batsuit in the upcoming Man of Steel sequel, the response was largely negative. A petition was created on Change.org to remove the Argo star and director as the Caped Crusader that has, at the time of this writing, received over 72,000 signatures.
“His acting skill is not even close to being believable as Bruce Wayne and he won’t do the role justice. He’s not intimidating enough for the role of Batman,” John Roden wrote. “Batman is someone that strikes fear in the hearts of men. His portrayal of Daredevil was atrocious and he’s not remotely close to an action star or a superhero. Please find someone else and deliver to the fans what they want.”
However, Oswalt felt the reaction was overblown and reminded fans that every actor has made bad movies. And while some of those actors “come apart, fray at all of their sanity nodes, and give up,” Affleck “brushed himself off, realized he’d kept his eyes open on the movies he’d done, and started directing.”
Incidentally, Affleck was also criticized for his decision to cast himself and not a Hispanic actor as Tony Mendez. Still, the film went on to win the Oscar for Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay, and it was considered by many to be one of the best films of Affleck’s career. It’s almost hard to believe that it was 10 years ago that he gave us one of — if not the — worst films of his career, Gigli.
“A Batman portrayed by someone who’s tasted humiliation and a reversal of all personal valences — kind of like Grant Morrison’s ‘Zen warrior’ version of Batman, post-ARKHAM ASYLUM, who was, in the words of Superman, ‘…the most dangerous man on the planet,'” Oswalt wrote. “Think for a second and admit that Ben Affleck is closer to THAT top-shelf iteration of The Dark Knight than pretty much anyone in Hollywood right now.”
Oswalt isn’t alone in his defense. Joss Whedon also supported Ben Affleck, writing on Twitter, “Affleck’ll crush it. He’s got the chops, he’s got the chin — just needs the material. Affleck & [Henry] Cavill toe to toe — I’m in.”