Ben Affleck As Batman: Should We Wait To Pass Judgment?


Graeme McMillan at Wired thinks he should be given a chance given his recent work:

Last night, Warner Bros announced that Ben Affleck would follow Christian Bale as the next Caped Crusader, taking on the role of Batman in 2015′s still-unnamed follow-up to Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel. Within minutes, social media imploded.

“Really looking forward to seeing Affleck bring the depth and gravitas to Batman that he brought to Daredevil and Gigli,” snarked Wil Wheaton. “I hope he fights the Joke-ah! #wickedpissah” added Patton Oswalt. “Damon as Robin! Damon as Robin!” demanded Joshua Malina. Some were more philosophical about things — “I can think of worse things plaguing this planet than Ben Affleck as Batman,” tweeted comic creator J. Torres. “Jennifer Garner as Wonder Woman, for example.” Others just couldn’t believe the news, like comic creator Frank Tieri, who asked “These Ben Affleck as Batman reports can’t possibly be real, right? RIGHT?”

When fans finally accepted that it was real, some just couldn’t quite deal with the news. Like John Roden, of Ludlow, KY, who created a petition on to have the actor removed from the project. “His acting skill is not even close to being believable as Bruce Wayne and he won’t do the role justice,” Roden’s introduction to the petition explains. “He’s not built, nor is he intimidating enough for the role of Batman. His portrayal of Daredevil was atrocious and he’s not remotely close to an action star. Please find someone else.”

Internet, I love you, but you’re bringing me down.

I’ll admit it: I don’t get the outright disdain and fear for the idea of Affleck playing Batman. Maybe it’s because I haven’t seen Daredevil in years — or perhaps it’s because I have seen movies likeHollywoodlandThe Town and Argo more recently, and think that Affleck’s a pretty good actor when he’s got decent material to work with. Coincidentally, I was watching Argo last night when I got the news about Affleck; When a friend texted to complain, I thought, “But he’s… good…?”

As a director, Ben Affleck is top notch. He’s directed three films – ‘Gone Baby, Gone’, ‘The Town’ and his Oscar winning effort, ‘Argo.’

But as an actor, even in his better efforts, Affleck is only…..decent. Yes, he was good in ‘The Town’ and ‘Argo’ but in the former he was paired with Jeremy Renner who was excellent and in the latter, he shared screen time with Alan Arkin who stole every scene he was in.

In addition, many actors are given the chance to play comic book heroes or villains and they get one shot. Sometimes it works and sometimes it does not.

Michael Keaton (Batman), Tobey Maguire (Spiderman) and Robert Downey Jr. (Iron Man) might have seemed liked odd choices when they were chosen, but they pulled it off.

Ryan Reynolds (The Green Lantern), George Clooney (Batman) and…..Ben Affleck (Daredevil) could not.

In the realm of super heroes, it’s one strike and you’re out.

Batman first had Michael Keaton. The franchise then suffered with the awful Val Kilmer (Would Batman ever say, “Chicks dig the car.”?) and the even worse George Clooney only to have the character rescued by Christian Bale (with an assist from Chris Nolan).

Ben Affleck is just too much of a risk. He should stay behind the camera and give himself the supporting roles he has taken as of late. He’s been doing his best work there.