The minds behind Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice are certainly taking the film’s title to heart. Not only did the first trailer build towards the teased showdown between the Man of Steel (Henry Cavill) and the Dark Knight (Ben Affleck), but the first theatrical posters showed nothing but the title heroes – with their opponents’ insignia scrawled over their faces.
The mystery surrounding the new Batsuit has apparently been willingly ended, with all three hero costumes revealed in detail, and now, the first (truly hi-res) image of Ben Affleck sporting the new cowl – not concealed by Superman-themed graffiti – has arrived. Along with a full color look at Affleck in costume.
Take a look at the cowl, Affleck’s stubbled Dark Knight, and yes, confirmation that even the best-designed cowls require Bruce Wayne to don black facepaint before cracking criminals’ skulls:
[Original image taken down at the request of Warner Bros.]
It’s clear that eyes really do tell the story… although there’s something to be said for Affleck’s chin’s ability to convey stern determination. Hopefully those who thought, from the very first word of his casting, that Affleck would do the cowl justice (at least from a visual standpoint) can feel vindicated. But if there were criticisms to be made of the first Dawn of Justice teaser trailer, Affleck’s ability to fill out the Batsuit wasn’t one of them.
Keep in mind: the color image above shows the Batsuit in light that the character will likely never see. Given that, it’s safe to assume that the blue hues along the seams are merely meant to offer some depth in that actual fabric, not appear as highlights or even colored in the finished product.
It’s also worth pointing out that for as much as Zack Snyder is credited with drawing much of his influence from Frank Miller’s “The Dark Knight Returns,” the legendary comic writer’s enraged, borderline-crazed Batman has yet to be seen in Affleck’s version. If Miller were the only influence, then the image above sporting a toothy, clenched-jaw grimace wouldn’t be out of place. As it stands, this Batman looks to bear the weight of a lengthy career in crimefighting – and potentially a few friends lost along the way.
Add the sheer bulk of Affleck’s torso – more than rivalling Christian Bale’s Batman Begins – and consider he’s standing over 6’4″, and the Joker would need to pack on some extra muscle.
There’s also little debate that no matter which of the previous Batman films or their respective Batsuits are a comic fan’s favorite, Snyder and Affleck’s version has taken the greatest pains to stick to the comic book look of the World’s Greatest Detective. That isn’t to say the best, since the grounded approach to Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy made an ‘armor/helmet’ design logical (and absolutely everything can be forgiven from Tim Burton’s original).
Fans can debate the believability of a crimefighter wearing what looks to be a leather cowl in the comments, but the costume designer is on record as stating that there’s more to Affleck’s cowl than meets the eye. At least fans can now debate the potential and visual direction of the brand new Batman being introduced with a clearer sense of the overall design.
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice will be in theaters on March 25th, 2016; Suicide Squad on August 5th, 2016; Wonder Woman – June 23rd, 2017; Justice League – November 17th, 2017; The Flash – March 23rd, 2018; Aquaman – July 27th, 2018; Shazam – April 5th, 2019; Justice League 2 – June 14th, 2019; Cyborg – April 3rd, 2020; Green Lantern – June 19th, 2020.