Not everyone sees eye-to-eye. You might love something that’s reviled by most others. When we at PoP! feel like that, we make an argument In Defense Of…
It is certainly a sight to behold as you’re casually scrolling through your social media feeds and a nerd news story as massive and divisive as “Ben Affleck Cast as Batman“ goes nuclear. You can witness the nerd rage, the jubilation and the backlash in response to the backlash all unfold in real time, and if it weren’t for the fact that we all clearly can stand each other, one’s heart would warm at the overwhelming sense of community beneath it all.
That being said, somehow the name “Ben Affleck” still elicits the type of gag reflexes it did back in the early 2000′s when the guy had just transitioned from View Askewniverse leading man and Academy Award Winner to tabloid fodder action star. The guy made some questionable life and career choices back then, but it’s 2013. Ben Affleck has made great strides in his career and his personal life in the past decade, capping his transformation off by taking home his second Oscar after Argo won Best Picture. Hear that? It’s the sound of me sucking Ben Affleck’s d—.
What’s done is done. Ben Affleck is going to be the next actor to don the cape and cowl in 2015′s Superman/Batman team-up, and you can’t stop it, no matter how many Gigli jokes you make (to that end, show me a ticket stub or a rental receipt from your Gigli viewing, you hack internet comedians). For those of you who don’t realize that Affleck is the bomb, yo, here’s a few arguments that should help soothe the butthurt between now and July 17th, 2015.
In every “15 Actors to play Batman” article written over the past year, no one was pegging Affleck to fill the tights. Then details started to trickle out about the type of actor Warner Bros. was searching for, and Josh Brolin was at the top of the rumor heap (along with Ryan Gosling…NO) because of his hardened exterior and mature age. They were looking for a veteran Batman, a Dark Knight who has been in the sh– in Gotham for years, who only emerges from the shadows once Kal-El makes a big mess of things in Metropolis. Affleck has a decade on Henry Cavill, but he’s not quite AARP material like Brolin. This gives Affleck at least 10 years as Bruce Wayne before it’s time to will the Batcave to some young blow-hard. Plus, he’s a bankable name that could remain the only name they need once they start filling out the rest of the Justice League roster.
Speaking of Justice League, Warner Bros. reportedly tried to snare Affleck as director of the long-gestating JL movie thanks to his impressive turns behind the lens of Gone Baby, Gone, The Town, and most recently, Argo. Who’s to say that Affleck, recently better known for his directing work than his acting, didn’t slide a clause into his Bat-contract which would allow him to direct a DC superhero movie sometime in the near future. Could we see Affleck direct himself in a stand-alone Batfilm after Justice League hits theaters? Man…Kevin Smith would really regret retiring then…
Much of the reasoning behind the Affleck backlash, other than just “UGH AFFLECK”, is a little film from 2003 called Daredevil. Was Daredevil a flawless adaptation of the Marvel comics? Not quite. Was it as bad as Ghost Rider, Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Blade: Trinity, Spider-Man 3, Punisher: War Zone or Wolverine: Origins? Hardly. It was a product of it’s time (2003), and as only the 5th movie to come out of Marvel Studios, it still holds up decently. Affleck’s hair might have been terrible, Jennifer Garner might have been a little too caucasian for Elektra, and the nu-metal soundtrack was as unnecessary as the flaming DD’s, but those missteps were overshadowed by great action sequences and solid villainous turns from Colin Farrell and Michael Clarke Duncan. Daredevil is a lot better than most would ever consider giving it credit for. Are there lessons to be learned? Surely, and Affleck’s had 10 years to sift through those lessons in his mind before superhero-ing up again.
Lastly, and unequivocally, Affleck was the bomb in Phantoms, yo. Debate that, internet.
It’s doubtful that Ben Affleck’s turn as Batman is going to be the revelation that was Heath Ledger‘s Joker (which is an unfair comparison for anyone), but if he can stop looking like he’s always just about to laugh and affect a non-growly Batman voice, he could give Christian Bale some competition as the Batman of our generation.
Filed Under: In Defense Of...