The Internet is a place full of hatred, spite and vitriol. Never was this more apparent than when Ben Affleck was announced as the next Batman. Due to the negativity thrown his way, I thought Affleck had confessed to organizing a dog-fighting ring.
I for one really like Ben Affleck. I’ll admit he hit a rough patch towards the middle of his career but he has more than vindicated himself as both an actor and director, especially with last year’s Argo. I think that most of the outrage over Affleck’s casting has to do with his previous roles and not him as an actor.
With that in mind, here are some of Ben Affleck’s previous characters and the pros and cons of them being Batman.
Chuckie Sullivan from Good Will Hunting
Chuckie Sullivan was a tough kid from the mean streets of Boston. I think he would be more than capable of handling the mean streets of Gotham. He wasn’t a rich kid, though, and probably wouldn’t have the financial capital necessary to start a career as the Caped Crusader. Should he come upon a financial windfall, though, his best friend was a genius and could definitely come up with some technical designs to match those of Lucius Fox.
If you thought Christian Bale’s Batman voice was ridiculous I can’t even begin to imagine what Boston Batman would sound like.
A.J. Frost from Armageddon
Armageddon may be Michael Bay and his Michael Bayiest. I remember sitting in the theater 15 years ago on opening weekend, ready to watch Bruce Willis and his rag tag group of offshore drillers take down an asteroid. A.J. Frost would make a good Batman because he already has experience saving the world. If he didn’t cave under the pressure of saving the planet then he definitely wouldn’t cave under the pressure of saving a single city.
The biggest problem with A.J. Frost as Batman is that he was pretty much the sidekick. Frost would more likely be Robin to Harry Stamper’s Batman.
Rudy Duncan from Reindeer Games
In order to be Batman, Bruce Wayne had to understand the criminal mind. He spent time in Asia stealing and hanging out with the criminal element. Rudy Duncan already had that part of Batman’s development covered, as he was an ex-con. He was also no stranger to violence and could probably handle some of Batman’s fisticuffs, though he was no ninja.
Having to admit that I saw Reindeer Games…in the theater…on opening weekend.
Matt Murdock from Daredevil
Matt Murdock is already a super hero. Bruce Wayne had to go through years of training in order to prepare himself to be Batman. Murdock has already done the hard work and would be a ready-made Batman. And, as a lawyer, Murdock could not only capture criminals but he could also prosecute them. If that were the case the next solo Batman movie should be called Law & Order: Batman.
One of the best aspects of Batman is that he doesn’t have any super powers. He’s just a normal billionaire like the rest of us. Matt Murdock has super powers but I think they get evened out because he’s blind. A 20/20 Batman is equal to a heightened senses Daredevil.
Tony Mendez from Argo
Again, like A.J. Frost, Tony Mendez knows what it’s like to deal with stressful situations. Being trapped in Iran when all they wanted to do was kill Americans would have been rather nerve-wracking. As a member of the CIA, Mendez also would have had the detective and sleuthing skills necessary to root out crime in Gotham. Also, Mendez was pretty ripped.
I don’t know how that 70s hair and beard would feel beneath the cape and cowl. Also, I don’t think John Goodman and Alan Arkin would make very good sidekicks. They could fill an Alfred role but I wouldn’t want to see either in spandex.
I don’t know if Ben Affleck will be great as Batman but I also don’t know if he’ll be terrible, nobody does. I know the Internet isn’t known for its level-headedness but the Affleck backlash was insane, even for the Internet. For now we should give Affleck and Zack Skyder the benefit of the doubt and wait until we actually see Batman vs. Superman before calling Ben Affleck the worst thing to happen to super hero movies since Ben Affleck.
What are your thoughts about Ben Affleck getting cast as Batman?