[WARNING: This article contains potential SPOILERS for Batman V Superman]
The rumor mill has been operating at full capacity in the early stages of Warner Bros. and DC Comics’ shared movie universe, particularly once it was confirmed that Suicide Squad would establish several connections and characters to those seen in Batman V Superman. The most notable of which is undoubtedly Jared Leto’s take on The Joker (sorry, Jesse Eisenberg).
Now that evidence of a Ben Affleck cameo in Suicide Squad continues to grow, a new rumor claims that the Batman/Joker bond may not only be strong enough to spread across two films, but may be a two-way street, as well. Word of The Joker’s impact on this version of Batman has been swirling for months, but those keen to remain surprised in the theater should be warned that potential SPOILERS lie ahead.
WARNING SPOILERS FOLLOW
It should be no surprise to those closely following the wealth of Batman V Superman rumors that the latest from Latino-Review is once again focused on the fate of Robin. First came rumors that Jared Leto’s Joker had already killed one Robin (an understandable assumption, given that an older Batman would finally make such a plot twist possible). Later the rumors compounded, with talk of a Robin memorial in the Batcave, and that The Joker and Harley Quinn had grown distant over the act, apparently not in agreement.
Now the site claims Jared Leto’s Joker will actually make his debut in Batman V Superman, in the form of a flashback in which he murders Batman’s former sidekick. The news is easier to swallow than many recent rumors: since the 1989 “Death in the Family” story saw Jason Todd (the second Robin) murdered at the hands of The Joker, Bruce Wayne has found himself haunted by the act, seen as the single greatest failure in the life of the Dark Knight.
Jared Leto’s Joker certainly seems the kind of crazy required to kill the sidekick of a man as large and terrifying as Batman – and the tattoo of what appears to be a dead bird on his right bicep was seen by many as confirmation. Whatever the tattoo (or the motivations behind it), the cameo would make perfect sense. Not only as a means to link the two films, but to introduce a new ‘origin story’ of sorts for Batman – the one hero that movie fans would say they know top to bottom by now.
Unfortunately, the entire slew of Robin rumors have begun to contradict one another. Although LR‘s latest report of a BVS cameo showing Joker killing Robin (Jason Todd) follows their previous claims, evidence of Dick Grayson being deceased in the film’s universe – gathered from the film’s actual sets – implies there may be crossed wires somewhere down the line. Either that, or two Robins have been killed (or claimed to have been) by the time audiences meet Batman.
Add in the persistent claims that Jena Malone may play “The Dark Knight Returns” version of the sidekick, and it’s obvious this twist hasn’t been entirely ‘spoiled,’ even if it’s still too confusing to grasp.
From our perspective, it seems WB and DC have a difficult choice to make. If Jason Todd is the version of the sidekick who dies in the flashback, then that leaves the door open for his return as The Red Hood (as is rumored to be a priority for the studio). However, where that leaves Dick Grayson – the version of the hero most fans will recognize – is a mystery.
Did he grow up to become Nightwing? Was he killed by Joker instead, allowing him to exist in the film universe in some capacity (an idea once thought impossible)? Or will the DC Movie Universe be one in which Dick Grayson and Jason Todd are fused into one character? Such a move is common in comic adaptations, and would clearly help to simplify their core Batman mythology. But there’s no question some potential would need to be sacrificed (or an even more shocking explanation we’ll steer clear of spoiling for now).
Which direction would you Batman fans hope to see taken? Should Dick Grayson be introduced as a former sidekick to the Dark Knight, and Jason Todd the fallen protege, just like the comics? Or would you be willing to see some changes be made for the larger movie universe? Share your thoughts in the comments.
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.
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