A Geek’s Wish List — What ‘Batman vs. Superman’ Can Do to Succeed

Man Of Steel Henry Cavill
Warner Bros

A lot of negativity has been spread around the Internet ever since it was announced that Ben Affleck would play Batman in the upcoming Batman Vs. Superman crossover. While casting is important to the success of a film, it’s what happens behind the scenes that really determine the quality of a movie. Man of Steel showed us just how brutal and god-like a fight between Kryptonians looks like, but it really failed to deliver a compelling narrative that stuck in the minds of the audience after they left the theater.

Spectacular set-pieces may have been enough for Man of Steel, but it won’t be enough for the first cinematic meeting between Batman and Superman. A duo with such diametrically opposed views on justice has to offer something substantial enough that even the most devout comic book fans will gladly sink their teeth in it. Here’s a few ways Batman vs. Superman can beef up its content for lasting success.

Play Up the Differences Between Batman and Superman

The dynamic between Batman and Superman will be central to success and longevity of the movie. But one key detail is that two superheroes do not trust each other, even though they have tremendous respect for each other. Superman realizes that the incredible wits, body and will of Batman is needed to keep the world safe, but that also makes him the most dangerous man in the world. Likewise, Batman respects the ideals Superman represents, but knows he must keep an ever vigilant eye on the Kryptonian should he ever go rogue. It’s an incredibly deep and complex relationship that needs to be properly conveyed in the big screen.

Develop a Simple, Yet Character-Driven Plot

Convoluted and special-effects driven storylines have plagued summer blockbusters lately. Even The Dark Knight was overly complicated. Geeks love dissecting and analyzing every single minutiae, and they will pick apart every possible plot hole to look for inconsistencies and illogical missteps. Keep it simple, and let fully-fleshed out characters make the plot substantial and memorable. Also, please don’t retread the belabored twist that the villain wanted to be captured. It never made any sense and everyone can see it coming a mile away by now.

Give the Women Something to Do

Amy Adams was a great addition to the Man of Steel cast as Lois Lane. While it was a great touch that such an intrepid investigative reporter would obviously discover Clark Kent’s secret identity, she was essentially reduced to a piece of falling debris for Superman to save for the rest of the movie. Show her to be the intelligent, resourceful, and strong woman of the 21st century that she is. If Lois Lane has a counterpart over at the Batman camp, make sure she’s also not just an armpiece for Bruce Wayne as well.

Minimize the Collateral Damage

Not every movie deserves the Michael Bay treatment. All I could think of during the epic fight between Superman and General Zod in Man of Steel was, “This is so stupid. No one would even consider calling Superman a hero after all that death and destruction.” Superheroes will always fight with one hand tied behind their back, but that’s what makes them great. Besides, Superman and Batman having to worry about who and what is around them will only add to the tension and infuse some purpose and weight to what would otherwise amount to as another mindless action sequence.

Christian Bale as Bruce Wayne / Batman in Warner Bros. Pictures' 'The Dark Knight'
Hollywood.com Staff/Syndicated by: Paramount Pictures

Let the Villain Get Away (or Live)

One of the best things about The Dark Knight was the amount of restraint it showed by letting the Joker live at the end. If Batman vs. Superman similarly resisted the urge to offer closure, it would make for a more memorable and thought-provoking movie. By not tying everything up neatly at the end, the movie ties more closely to a complex world where two opposing views of justice exist. Besides, the important thing is that both Superman and Batman live up to their ideals. If anything, letting the bad guys get away is a great way to set up a sequel!

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