Have A Cold One

Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice

batman vs superman poster

Henry Cavill as Clark Kent/ Superman
Ben Affleck as Bruce Wayne/ Batman
Amy Adams as Lois Lane
Gal Gadot as Diana Prince/ Wonder Woman
Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor
Jeremy Irons as Alfred

Laurence Fishburne as Perry White
Diane Lane as Martha Kent

"I figured. The cape." – Martha Kent to Batman when he tells her he's a friend of her son.


I love comic books. As a kid, I would spend my entire allowance on them. I had such a massive collection at one time I still cry over its loss. (destroyed in a flood…and when I rebuilt some of it, that was destroyed in a tornado. Neither natural disaster gave me super powers).

So, like any comic book fan I really had high hopes for Batman vs Superman: The Dawn of Justice. Marvel comics has obviously been kickin' ass and takin' names with their cinematic universe so I really hoped DC could do the same. They have plenty of characters and a few TV shows under their belt. Batman and Superman are two of the most popular superheroes on the planet! A movie with them together should be like a license to print money, right?

Well, maybe not. DC comics can't seem to capture the moment with their characters on the big screen. They've done so with Batman (at least somewhat, anything after Batman Returns and before Batman Begins is trash.). They tried with Green Lantern and I'm still amazed at how that movie was so bad and uninteresting. But Superman and Batman? How can you not make a super-awesome movie that will be cherished forever by fans? Here's how:

First you try to merge two of the greatest stories concerning these characters in one movie. That trick never works, Bullwinkle. The movie tries to take Frank Miller's original The Dark Knight Returns series and the Death of Superman storyline and squeeze something out of it by mashing them together. The Dark Knight miniseries from the 80s was one of the best limited series comic book ever printed. Batman and Superman fight at the end of it and everyone wanted to read it! But we're talking about characters that have a lot of history on them…in that story it's supposed to be a decade or so into the future (at least from 1982) Batman has retired and Superheroes have been outlawed. He obviously comes back when Gotham City is facing a massive crime wave. Superman on the other hand is secretly working for the government and reluctantly follows orders to stop Batman because he's not politically comfortable for the administration. That was the core of their fight in the comic, but not the whole story. But you can't do all of that on screen so it boils down to Bruce Wayne thinks Superman might be a threat. He even says in one scene that if there is even a 1% chance that Superman would turn against humanity he gotta get got!

Dang…this is from a guy that should have, but did not, kill the Joker about 500 million times.

Then they fit in the villain from the Death of Superman storyline from the 90s. Now ya gotta understand when this came out it was kind of a big deal. I remember because I was stationed in Germany at the time and saw a news story on it…people all over the world were like "They're gonna kill Superman? How can they kill Superman! He's a hero!". The day that book came out people took time off work to go to the PX to buy it. The line was so long they ran out of copies! The Death of Superman introduced "Doomsday", a monster so powerful he pretty much beat up the entire Justice League with one arm tied behind his back. They didn't even give him an origin in the storyline. He just appeared and started smashing things. Superman, being the last hero standing to oppose him fights Doomsday until exhaustion and they kill each other in one last furious battle. (of course, Superman came back, but that's another story…so did Doomsday)

Now taking elements from those two stories for the movie is not a bad idea. It's just how it panned out that made it a bad idea. They threw Lex Luthor in the mix, but they made him such a flighty, erratic person I couldn't understand his true goal. In the comics (at least after John Byrne reinvented Superman in the 80s after the first Infinite Crisis series) Luthor was the super smart CEO of a major corporation. He is in this movie too, but he's portrayed as an annoying fast talking hipster. It's not the actors fault he's just playing the role he was given, but he's nowhere near as threatening or formidable as the Luthor from the books or even the Justice League Animated Series. Then they added Wonder Woman…which I guess they had to… (as this movie is a lead in to the Justice League movie franchise and she is a core member of the Justice League). I won't lie, my reason for watching the movie was to see Wonder Woman in a movie. I've seen Batman and Superman in movies enough, let me see the sister throw down! (Wonder Woman is getting her own movie)

They also have cameos of other Justice League members, The Flash, Aqua Man, and Cyborg in the movie. Again, this is really just to pave the way for the Justice League movie. That's what this movie is about. It was never completely about Batman vs Superman, it was just to set up this universe so DC can reasonably compete with Marvel in the cinematic superhero world. It's like they rushed it out to play catch up without actually thinking about things like, well, say A PLOT.

Everything depends on characters knowing something they shouldn't know with little to no explanation of it. How did Luthor figure out who Superman and Batman really were? How did Lois figure out Batman's plan to kill Doomsday? How did Wonder Woman get off of the airliner she was on? (yeah, she can fly NOW, but in the past, she had an invisible airplane…I bullshit you not, young people) It's frustrating for a fan of comics because we want these movies to be good, not flounder and flop.

Superhero movies have a broad appeal but a smaller fan base…sort of like Star Trek. A lot of people know the basics, but not all of them are diehard fans. So, I hope that after this DC gets their crap together and doesn't make a "Green Lantern" out of the Justice League or Wonder Woman movie. As for Batman vs Superman? It served its purpose which was as I stated just to pave the way. Let's hope they didn't pave it with the tears of fans.


1.) I guess Superman killed that African guy, huh? So much for Superman not using his powers to just outright be judge and jury, huh? Or are you going to try to tell me that he smashed the guy through what looked like TWO stone walls and it didn't murder the guy?

2.) No wonder Gotham City has a crime problem. They have really stupid cops. Two cops go into a building and find women caged up in the basement. There's apparently some kind of human trafficking going on. Well, instead of immediately calling for, you know, more cops, maybe some EMTS or something they wait until they hear a scream upstairs. (It's Batman going all Abu Grahib on some schmuck) Guess what happens? ONE cop...only ONE goes to investigate. Wouldn't it be smart if they BOTH went, you know, to back each other up, considering they don't know what's going on upstairs. It's not like the caged up women were going anywhere.
• When the lone cop sees Batman (who is apparently doing a Spider-Man impression) in the corner he immediately opens fire. Ok, fine, he's scared and at this time Batman is like a boogie man in Gotham City. When his partner enters the room he almost blows the guy's head off with a shotgun! His partner just complains rather mildly "You almost took my face off!". That's one chill dude. If someone almost shot me in the face by accident they'd at least get a kick in the nuts for it.
• Come to think of it, Metropolis has some idiotic cops, too. They have a big ass Superman Statue in the park, a cop is standing right there and he doesn't notice a vandal in a wheelchair climbing up on it to deface it until the guy is halfway up the daggone thing. (Also note, none of the citizens in the park said anything either)
• Wait, what? Batman now BRANDS the crooks he catches with a bat symbol? Worst, he already had the guy beaten and tied up to a radiator. He could have just called the cops himself and had him arrested. Now Batman is a torturer? Averted a little since Alfred does complain about it, thinking Bruce (Batman) Wayne is becoming cruel.

3.) The Government Guy, the one seen with Senator Finch when she is first introduced...I don't know if he has a name and if he does I didn't catch it...that allows Luthor Access to Zod's body is too unrealistic even for a comic book movie. I think there must have been some scenes dropped on the cutting room floor. See, after Luthor gets the DNA from Zod's body (which is kept quarantined in a big freaking tent in the middle of the city for some reason) he's seen offering the guy a Jolly Rancher candy. Luthor is all like "It's cherry" and coerces Government Guy to let him place the candy in his mouth like he was a friggin' dog. Sorry, I missed it, why exactly would this guy...who clearly does not want Luthor's fingers in his mouth...letting him do this? What man in his right mind would let someone completely humiliate them like that without some kind of reason? Especially this Luthor...he's not imposing or threatening and he has no body guards around him when he does this.

4.) When the General tells Lois Lane that his "C.I." has told him that the entire desert fiasco was a set up to make Superman look guilty and Luthor was most likely involved she wonders for a moment about "How could they know Superman would rush in there to save the day"...and then she realizes it was because SHE was in danger there. Was that something she really had to think about? I mean, she's sleeping with the guy! It's her boyfriend/ fiancee, whatever!
• On the flipside, I can kind of see how she'd wonder for a moment. I mean, how did Luthor or anyone else know Superman was going to show up? What if he was on the can or something? Wouldn't there a few easier ways to set up a situation that makes Superman look bad with less variables?
• And what kind of stupid plan was Luthor making in the first place? It only unfolds as it does by plot convenience. So he somehow sets up Keefe to bring a bomb in his wheelchair into the Capitol building that kills practically everyone inside the place during the Hearing on Superman. First, how did he know Superman would even show up? What if Superman decided "Screw this, I ain't going!"? It's not like anyone could force him to appear before the committee. Secondly how did he even get the bomb past any detection in the capitol? Third...how did he put that stupid bottle of peach tea in front of Senator Finch? Why, even?!

5.) As the bomb goes off during the hearing they show Superman completely unfazed in the middle of the explosion. Ok, it's Superman, the explosion can't actually harm him...but he he isn't even stunned. Wouldn't the force of the blast at least hurled him in the air?
• How is that explosion supposed to make Superman look bad? If he had wanted to kill-murder everyone in the building he wouldn't need a bomb.

6.) They don't explain how Luthor knows the secret identities of Superman and Batman both, which admittedly annoys me. You'd think if he had figured it out somehow, someone else would too, like the government.

7.) So Batman and Superman fight and Batman clearly intends on killing Superman...he just takes his own sweet time doing it every time he gets Supes on the ropes. Superman on the other hand doesn't want to kill Batman if he can help it. He specifically stated that he wants to try to convince Batman to help him save his mother, Martha Kent, from Luthor's goon squad...but every time Superman could possibly use his powers to restrain Batman or at least disarm him for a few minutes he does stuff like smash him through walls. Thats really not going to endear a guy to want to listen to you, no matter how sincere you are. That's like asking a guy that doesn't like you very much to help you find your lost cat while kicking him in the balls. Then in the most hilariously stupid moment of the fight Superman who is about to have his dome caved in by a pissed off Batman says "You're letting them kill MARTHA!" (Not "You're letting the kill my MOTHER!" like a normal person would say.) Batman, enraged, asks "Why did you say that name?!" only to have Lois Lane show up at that precise moment and tell him it's his mother's name. Then they decide to all be friends because their mothers are both named "Martha". Right.
How the hell did Lois even know where they were in order to tell Batman this crucial snippet of information, anyway? I guess the same way she found Superman at the end of Man of Steel even though that Super fight would have placed Superman miles away in a demolished city.
• The goon Luthor hired to kill Martha Kent had plenty of time to kill her and get out of dodge while Batman was on another floor fighting the other goons. Just sayin'.

8.) It's a good thing the Punisher...I mean Batman, was able to get to his Bat-Plane so fast so he could save Martha Kent. He must have parked nearby. Well, he might as well have been the Punisher. Batman mowed down the mercenaries firing on the Bat-Plane with a freaking nose mounted gatling gun. Not to mention the guys he killed earlier in the movie just before he met Superman. It makes you wonder why the world was pissed at Superman for "maybe" killing some people when Batman is definitely killing guys and even branding them with a Bat-Iron or something! He's not only acting like the Punisher, he's becoming The Phantom, too!

9.) Geezuz! What is it with Superhero movies and nuking threats without much thought! In the first Avengers movie they were about to nuke New York City to stop the alien threat. In this movie the military clearly sees that Superman is trying to fly Doomsday out into space and they decide to nuke him anyway! Look, I don't buy the whole "We can nuke him while they're high up without casualties!" excuse. What about fallout, you morons? Not to mention what a nuke might do the magnetic field. The really bad thing is the nuke went off and people on the ground saw it as it was directly over Metropolis. Boy are their property values gonna go down when the radiation starts making three headed kids.
• Ok, dammit, this movie is pissing me off with the "characters knowing stuff they had no way of knowing" crap. Batman tells Alfred (via radio) that he's going to try and get Doomsday to follow him back into the city, since he left the kryptonite spear he planned to stab-murder Superman with there. (Helluva thing to leave layin' around, huh?) When Superman gets back to Earth after being nuked in orbit the first thing he says to Batman is "Did you get the spear?" How the hell would he know what Batman was trying to do? I find it unlikely that he simply guessed.
• Then they decide to stretch whats left of your suspension of disbelief by having Lois suddenly think "Hey, the kryptonite spear I threw in to that big pool of water for no good reason might save the day!" and jump in after it. This is only to put her in some kind of stupid danger so she can be saved. When they were scripting this was there no one to say "Hey, that's kind of dumb....let's figure out another way for this to unfold."?


♦ You almost don't think about it when you're watching any movie or show with Batman in it, but dang it, the "BatCave" is too damned elaborate. Look at the Batcave in the movie....it has so much high tech equipment and computers it looks like the interior of a futuristic spaceship. Now ask yourself, how could even a billionaire like Bruce Wayne keep that a secret? It's not like he could have done all of this by himself even with Alfred's help! You'd need construction crews, contractors etc. Did he make them all sign a document so they would never tell anyone that he was Batman?

♦ When Wallace Keefe...the guy who lost his legs in the destruction during the big Kryptonian fight (from Man of Steel and replayed in this movie) gets arrested for spraying "False God" on the Superman Statue in "Heroes Park" the TV news footage says "Heroes Park Hate Crime". Um, do the writers of this move know what a hate crime is? I mean, they are real and a really despicable thing. But I wouldn't label a guy defacing a statue of a superhero a hate crime.

♦ Is it just me, or does this version of Luthor get on your nerves, too? It may seem like I'm unfairly picking on Luthor's character...and hell, maybe I am. Luthor doesn't have to be a carbon copy of the one from the comics, but in this movie he seems more like the Joker than Luthor.


This movie has it's own Tropes page. As always with TV Tropes, make sure you have plenty of time. It can be addicting.


This movie would get only three beers or less, but it wasn't all bad, despite what I've said. For a comic book fan it does have the spirit of a four beer rating. "Well, at least you don't feel like your time was completely wasted. If you turn your brain off (which is pretty much what you're doing drinking four beers) it was "okay".". If you're not a big fan of Superhero movies or comics you can take off at least two beers. You'll feel better, trust me...I'm your bartender.

three beers

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