Author: Jay-Rey (@jay_rey)
Regardless of your hobbies or interests, there is always a dichotomy, even amongst people “on your side”. Do you like Batman? Do you like Grant Morrison Batman or Scott Snyder Batman? Adam West or Michael Keaton? No one can love something outright. It is just the way it is. So it comes as no surprise that when something new of what we love comes out, someone hates it.
The most recent example of this is Batman: Arkham Origins. Fans of the second game, Arkham City, always wanted another Batman game. I mean, who doesn’t want to roam the streets of Gotham, punching prisoners in the head without alarming his buddies. So when a third game was announced, there was some excitement to be had. But the news was attached to a tidbit most people weren’t ready for: The game would be helmed by WB Montreal, not the previous home of the popular Batman series, Rocksteady. Not only these, but original voice actors Mark Hamill, Kevin Conroy, as well as writer Paul Dini, would not be involved this time around. And I’ll admit, I was one of the people with my pitchfork ready.
“No one can do it better than Rock Steady!”
“Kevin Conroy is my only Batman!”
“Mark Hamill was in Batman?!”
But this kind of reaction happens across the board. Look at Ben Affleck cast as Batman, Jeremy Renner in a sequel to Bourne without the titular character, every time Bruce Banner is recast, the thought of Ultron not being created by Hank Pym in the next Avengers flick, and so on. People who are fan enough to get upset about something like this, rationalize it as thus: I am a fan of ::Insert thing here (thats what she said [we have to go deeper]):: because of everything. Every detail, to a fanatic, makes whatever it is special. Han shot first, and if you tell a Star Wars fan otherwise, you might get a face full of hot-inhaler-breath disagreeing with you.
Why does this happen?
I think it is related to the idea of who is “responsible” for the piece of work. Is it Paul Dini who wrote up a universe that is so fitting? Is it Kevin and Mark, who are considered to be the end-all-beat-all voices for these two iconic characters? Or is it a studio who adds it all together? Batman is an interesting case, as everything switched at the same time. Nothing, in terms of recognizable names, was being brought over. It was a scary time for Batman fans. How could they possibly live up to what they have done if they are starting from scratch?
But that isn’t true. WB Montreal was supplied with everything from the previous game, Paul Dini isn’t the only person to have written an awesome batman story, and Troy Baker (Booker DeWitt of Bioshock Infinite, Joel from Last of Us, and countless other awesome games) takes the roll of Joker. See? There are some not so bad things in the story! But thats just how it goes. It isn’t Batman, its my Batman. No matter how baseless and senseless it is to get riled up, people always will.
Here is a list of other things that have caused as much outrage. Have anything to add?
- Michael Bay’s TMNT about Aliens (WTF Bay?)
- Heath Ledger cast as The Joker (The guy from Knight’s Tale?)
- Michael Cera cast as Scott Pilgrim (The guy from Zombieland?)
- Total Recall NOT going to Mars (At least they had the 3-boobed chick)
- Asa Butterfield cast as Ender Wiggin in Ender’s Game (Too old… but did you know Gabrielle Union was 27 in Bring it on? No one complained about that…)
- Hugh Jackman cast as Wolverine
- Any remake (Oldboy, Evil Dead, Star Trek, etc)