Ben Affleck’s portrayal of Batman in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) has been met with mixed reactions from fans and critics alike. While some praised his performance, others were sceptical about his ability to play the iconic superhero. However, despite the criticisms, Affleck’s Batman has become a popular and intriguing take on the character, leaving a lasting impression on the DCEU.
Affleck’s Batman first appeared in “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” (2016), which saw him go up against Henry Cavill’s Superman. In this film, we see an older, more jaded Batman who has been fighting crime in Gotham for over 20 years. He’s seen his fair share of tragedy and loss, and it’s made him cynical and bitter. He’s lost faith in humanity and sees himself as the only one who can protect Gotham from the dangers that threaten it.
Affleck’s portrayal of Batman in “Batman v. Superman” was praised for being dark and gritty, which is a departure from the more lighthearted versions of the character we’ve seen in the past. His Batman is a brooding, haunted figure who’s seen some of the worst things that Gotham has to offer. His performance captures the pain and anguish that the character experiences, and it’s easy to see why he’s become so hardened over the years.
One of the most iconic scenes in “Batman v. Superman” is the warehouse fight scene, where Batman takes on a group of armed thugs to rescue Martha Kent. This scene is a testament to Affleck’s physicality and his ability to portray Batman as a skilled fighter. He’s quick, agile, and ruthless, and it’s easy to believe that he’s capable of taking on multiple opponents at once.
In “Justice League” (2017), we see a slightly different side of Affleck’s Batman. He’s still a grizzled, cynical figure, but he’s also more of a team player. He recognises that he can’t do everything alone and needs the help of other superheroes to defeat the villainous Steppenwolf. In this film, we see Affleck’s Batman as more of a strategist and a leader than just a solitary figure fighting crime in Gotham.
Unfortunately, “Justice League” didn’t do as well as “Batman v. Superman,” and the film was widely criticised for its messy plot and uneven tone. However, Ben Affleck’s performance as Batman was still a highlight of the film. He brings a sense of gravitas to the role and does a good job of balancing Batman’s cynicism with his more heroic qualities.
One of the most interesting things about Affleck’s portrayal of Batman is his relationship with the Joker. In “Suicide Squad” (2016), we get a glimpse of the Joker and Batman’s past, and it’s clear that there’s a lot of bad blood between them. This is further explored in “Zack Snyder’s Justice League” (2021), where we see a dream sequence where Batman is in a post-apocalyptic world, leading a ragtag team of superheroes against a tyrannical Superman. In this sequence, we see a grizzled, heavily armed Batman who’s desperate to stop the Joker from destroying everything he holds dear.
Overall, Ben Affleck’s portrayal of Batman in the DCEU has been a mixed bag. While some fans have praised his dark, brooding take on the character, others have criticised his lack of emotional range and wooden delivery. However, there’s no denying that he brought a sense of gravitas to the role and did a good job of capturing the pain and anguish that Batman experiences on a daily basis.
The Backlash Against Ben Affleck’s Casting
When it was first announced that Ben Affleck would be playing Batman in “Batman v. Superman,” there was a significant amount of backlash from fans. Many felt that Affleck was the wrong choice for the role and that he didn’t have the acting chops to pull it off. There were even petitions to have him removed from the film, which only added to the scrutiny surrounding his performance.
However, despite the initial backlash, Affleck proved the naysayers wrong and delivered a solid performance as Batman. While he may not have been everyone’s first choice for the role, it’s clear that he put a lot of effort into preparing for the part, both physically and emotionally.
The physical transformation
One of the things that impressed fans the most about Affleck’s performance was his physical transformation. He gained a significant amount of muscle mass and underwent a rigorous training regimen to prepare for the role. His physique was more imposing than any previous actor to portray the Dark Knight, and it added to the sense of realism in his performance.
Affleck’s Batman was more of a bruiser than a martial artist, relying on his strength and durability to take down his opponents. His suit was also designed to be more practical than previous versions, with a focus on protection and mobility rather than style.
The Legacy of Ben Affleck’s Batman
While Ben Affleck has since retired from the role of Batman, his legacy as the Dark Knight will live on. Despite the criticisms and controversies surrounding his performance, he managed to bring a new level of depth and complexity to the character, something that will undoubtedly influence future interpretations of Batman on the big screen.
Additionally, his portrayal of an older, more experienced Batman opened up the possibility for new stories and directions for the character. His performance may not have been universally loved, but it was undeniably influential and helped shape the DCEU in significant ways.
Ben Affleck’s portrayal of Batman in the DCEU may have been divisive, but it was also one of the most memorable and unique interpretations of the character to date. His dark, brooding take on the Dark Knight was a departure from previous versions, and his physical transformation helped make his performance more believable.
While some fans may never warm up to Affleck’s Batman, it’s clear that he brought a new level of depth and complexity to the character. His legacy will live on, and his performance will undoubtedly influence future interpretations of the Caped Crusader on the big screen. Despite the criticisms and controversies, there’s no denying that Affleck left his mark on the DCEU and gave us a Batman that we won’t soon forget.