A lot of people have talked a lot of smack about Ben Affleck taking up the cowl for Batman v Superman, but Battfleck’s got at least one supporter who’s firmly in his corner: the original big screen Batman, Adam West.
Back before Batman was the unbeatable, pinnacle-of-human-achievement dark hero that he is today, he was high camp. Adam West’s Batman carried Bat Shark Repellant, used the same rope-climbing gimmick episode after episode, and danced. Oh, yes, he danced.
We live in more enlightened times now, though, and Batman is being treated the way God and Bob Kane intended: as the psychopathic, rich orphan who can’t get over his parents deaths and brutalizes people that had nothing to do with those deaths, thereby encouraging even crazier psychopaths to take to the streets to make Gotham City even crazier.
Even though Batman doesn’t do the Batusi anymore, Adam West’s opinion is still sought out at Comic-Cons and other nerd gatherings, largely because West is often eager to give that opinion. Asked what he thought of Ben Affleck taking on the role of Batman in Batman v Superman, the 86-year-old West told Mashable that he had a lot of faith in Affleck, and that we might have already seen a bit of Ben’s Bruce Wayne already.
“Ben Affleck has matured so beautifully as an actor,” West said at Comic-Con. “I’ve heard a lot of adverse comments – I think it’s ridiculous. He’ll be much better than you think. Go see his current movie [‘Gone Girl’] and you’ll see glimpses of Batman. He’ll be good.”
We won’t get to see whether West is right about Affleck until Batman v Superman hits the screen in March of 2016. That opening will make Affleck the sixth actor to take on the role of Batman, following West himself, Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, and Christian Bale.
There’s no telling how well or poorly Affleck will handle the role, but we do have an idea of a worst-case scenario. Two examples, actually. Worst come worst, we could see Daredevil Redux, bearing out the axiom that those who do not learn from Ben Affleck’s past debacles are doomed to repeat them.
Hard as it may be to believe, it could be worse. We could see something on the level of Batman and Robin, a Batman movie so atrocious that George Clooney has apologized – multiple times! – for his role in it.
In any case, we won’t know at all how Affleck looks and performs in the cape and cowl until the Batman v Superman trailers start releasing some time next year. We do know one thing for certain, though: he’s unlikely to be the best Batman of 2016. That honor will likely go to Lego Batman, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see the toy version of the Dark Knight topping the real life version at the box office either.