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Film Theory: NOT What He Seems! (The Batman 2022)

Film Theory: NOT What He Seems! (The Batman 2022)
so the main villain of the

batman

is the riddler a character who's always honestly been one of my favorite

batman

antagonists i mean in the comics he's this guy that thinks he's so smart that he leaves batman a bunch of puzzles to solve in order to lead him right to the crime scene it's like the nerdiest attempt at a chad move ever which is why i was so excited to see him here in this movie reimagined as a terrifying masked serial murderer a nightmarish zodiac killer for the instagram age driven by the single-minded goal of getting people to watch his internet videos about the deep lore of gotham city oh no hello internet welcome to

film

theory

the show that encourages you to pull in adam west and punch that subscribe button so hard it says oof your glasses remember never hit a man with glasses well friends hot on the heels of the huge success that was batman v superman well it looks like it took some time but the batman is finally set to take flight here in 2018 2019 right in time for the summer blockbusters for halloween for the top of

2022

we finally have the release of the ben affleck directed matt reeves directed batman movie starring ben affleck oh come on yes friends we finally have ourselves a new standalone batman movie the latest feature

film

adaptation of the only character in the dc comics universe that warner brothers is apparently aware exists i mean i would make the joke myself but it looks like they've already done it for me coming this summer they're finally going to make a movie about me alfred the movie the real punchline here is that by the time that joke made it to theaters wb had actually greenlit and alfred's show my movie must be slated for next summer coming next summer it's the car oh they did the car before you bro and now they're doing that one too

what

's up dc kids fandom i'm really excited to give you a little sneak peek into the new show fat wheels even the upcoming flash movie is apparently a batman movie okay so maybe the world's a bit saturated with batman content these days which kind of makes it ironic that today i don't want to talk about the movie that we got instead i want to talk about the movie that we're gonna get you see since the release of the film the internet's been buzzing with headlines all about the big joker tease that happens at the end of this movie just to recap where we leave things off as the batman concludes riddler aka edward nashton turns out to basically be a dorky batman fanboy who thought that he was helping the crime fighting mission with his clues and honestly batman needs all the help he can get considering he manages to thwart about like let's say one third of the riddler's big evil scheme sure just about every specific person that ridler sets out to kill gets killed and gotham city is flooded just like he planned but i i guess batman managed to stop like most of an attack at a big political event so yay along the way he learns that in order to truly make gotham better he's gonna need to check his privilege brush up on his spanish and recalibrate his branding a bit considering that one of the gunman in the finale repeats his i'm vengeance catchphrase back to him it's a good thing that he had already caught the riddler at that point because it sounds like he's gonna need a me day to process that one speaking of catching the riddler he gets one last scene moping in a cell in arkham asylum and it's here that we finally come to the conversation that everyone's been talking about and the one that i want to focus on for today's episode since we obviously don't have footage from the new movie let me just set the scene a barren cell tint it red redder redder no no really i mean real red pretending like ketchup got smeared across the film reel or something yeah there it is perfect riddler sad and confused paces in his room suddenly a voice from the next cell over says

what

is it they say one day you're on top and the next you're a clown well let me tell you there are worse things than being hey hey hey don't be sad you did so well and you know gotham loves a comeback story who are you well that's the question isn't it riddle me this the less of them you have the more one is worth a friend and then they both laugh but not like normal laughs they both sound like two teenage boys swapping fortnite memes on the playground and scene now we don't get a good look at who this person is the actor is barry kyogen and he's credited only as unseen arkham inmates but his face appears to be somehow disfigured so between the high-pitched pre-pubescent laughter the clown references and the scars clearly everyone is immediately thinking that this guy is the joker and it certainly makes sense he is the top batman villain every version of this property is always in a rush to get him in there and there have been rumors that kyogen's undisclosed role would specifically be a version of the joker and yet i'm not so sure uh matt it feels almost too easy too predictable not right now i'm trying to record you're already a movie studio fighting the perception that it keeps repeating itself why would you make your big build-up something that everyone was so sure that they could see coming and at the same time why would you take such a huge risk any casting of the joker immediately gets compared to heath ledger's iconic portrayal in the dark knight and that's just not a comparison that many actors are able to win a bad joker too early in your series can really kill off your chances before you even get a chance to spread your wings isn't that right jared leto really bruce honor we live in a society like i said that's why i believe the batman is actually pulling the wool over our eyes they're misdirecting us they're setting up a different batman arch nemesis one that would work a lot better for the world that this film's created a guy named hush seriously what i am trying to record yes hi hello head editor dan here you really might want to see this one of the lines from the scene that's not in is that unseen prisoner says to him he says it's almost our anniversary isn't it and that character who is the character that you think he is wait so he's the character i think he is did they already just confirm my hush

theory

no no matt you're missing the point here the reason that joker's in the movie is batman is so unnerved because the riddler is writing to him and so he goes to see another killer that he's clearly had an experience with and this killer in this story is not yet the character that we come to know and so here we have a joker who's not yet the joker oh yeah wait when did this come out march 4th that is literally the day that the movie released they leave in a bunch of theory fodder trademarks only to reveal the answer the same day but but i i just finished the script i i just got into the recording booth i know buddy i know it hurts life has been a cruel joke on him and he's eventually going to become declare himself as a clown declare himself as the joker oh be quiet matt reeves i get it you've done enough damage well there's a new salad fingers you want to talk about that you should be hush wait what he should be hush yeah that's it they're all wrong the director is wrong about his own movie all of them the director the studio everyone is wrong to insert the joker into this world this character should be hush it would work better it would make more sense heck the easter eggs are already there in the movie so as long as you scrub all these director interviews from the world you have something that could really work you're really going through with this uh going through with what dan making the movie better making these business decisions over at wb and dc makes sense yeah yeah i am now stand aside my friend i got a theory to record all right good luck oh boy created by jeff loeb and jim lee in 2002 hushes it's it's a little bit complicated have you noticed that most major batman villains are directly commenting on the batman in some way two-face is a guy with two personas like someone who's rich during the day and a bat vigilante at night the penguin is a low-life criminal who kaz plays as a rich aristocrat a direct commentary on the billionaire who hunts him down batman is a man pretending to be a bat but what happens when you have a bat pretending to be a man man bat look not all of them need an elaborate explanation but whereas all these other villains are commentaries on batman hush is the villain that's basically the evil version of bruce wayne in the original hush storyline a boy named thomas elliott grows up as bruce's childhood friend but whereas bruce wayne became batman following the tragic murder of his loving parents eliot's parents were abusive and neglectful and his origin begins by attempting to engineer their deaths in an accident so he can inherit the fortune but when the moment finally comes elliott only manages to kill his father his mother's life is actually saved by thomas wayne thwarting his plan for inheritance driving him further into madness and leaving him with a permanent grudge against the wayne family from that starting point thomas elliot grows up to become a brilliant surgeon with a chip on his shoulder during the 11 issue storyline he learns that bruce wayne is batman and he becomes obsessed with tearing him down to do this he manipulates almost everyone including joker poison ivy killer croc even superman as a part of his elaborate scheme and here's the kicker the reason he knows the bruce batman connection hush's secret partner figures it out the one smart enough to put it all together the riddler they team up they're friends just like we see them becoming friends in arkham at the end of the batman that's it they shared a storyline and worked together one time that's your big evidence no no that's not it obviously that would be way too big of a leap i mean i don't want to be that guy but have you seen these channels i'm gonna choose to ignore that in this new movie the riddler's grudge against the waynes started when he was a kid living in an orphanage set to be funded by a wayne family charity initiative one that then lost funding when the waynes got killed right well the riddler has himself a theory a conspiracy theory that their death wasn't a random act of violence in a rambling explainer video he tries to prove that thomas wayne while running for mayor of gotham asked for a hit on a tabloid journalist that was set to do an expose about his wife martha being treated for mental illness at arkham when the deal goes south the waynes get killed but what's important here are the images that flash across the screen the journalist who supposedly gets killed is named edward elliott and then we see the word hush scrawled across the tv screen elliot hush they're trying to tell us something it's an easter egg sure it's pretty explicit but what is it that our scarred friend says in his dialogue at the end of the new movie everyone loves a comeback story that line it doesn't really make a lot of sense if we assume that this is the joker oh no he was caught off screen in batman's first year in a movie that never got made and now he's back in the sequel sure i guess but what if this guy was thought to be dead and is looking to surprise everyone with his return now the line really fits edward elliot or better yet what if it's edward elliot's son coming back thomas another child who's made an orphan thanks to the corruption of gotham but unlike bruce who grows up and internalizes that to become a force for good this kid grows up to take a different path one of spreading fear and murder that comeback line also makes a lot of sense with hush's history he himself is a comeback story from bruce and his childhood spent together and his big plot to take down batman in the comics revolves around making it seem like jason todd has come back from the dead everyone loves a comeback story i mean sure but the director said but beyond the riddler connection and the easter eggs hidden film hush makes the most sense to use for this version of batman this batman is a detective he walks around slowly he monologues about his thoughts slowly he solves mysteries slowly and hush is very much a crime noir villain someone manipulating things from the shadows pulling the strings he tends to work best in any story where elaborate conspiracies are afoot or people are digging into the not so pure pasts of thomas and martha wayne just like the riddler is doing here in this first movie hush comes from comic story lines like batman r.i.p and heart of hush where villains dig into the old dark rumors of the wayne family's connections to things like drug scandals and the accusations that alfred is bruce's biological father thematically too thomas elliott just makes more sense the batman's version of bruce wayne is not a perfect guy who's figured out his entire mission yet he essentially gets dressed down to his face by catwoman about how it's actually guys like bruce wayne who are the problem in places like gotham and in that context a villain like thomas elliot is hush someone from bruce wayne's world who's living the same kind of double life but with the mirror opposite values and mission would be the perfect way to continue driving that point home you're done speaking of selena kyle hush kidnaps her then surgically removes her heart and holds it hostage in a story arc so you know in this new film universe he would have her hanging out and available for that that one's kind of weird not gonna lie but also look at the casting and design of this guy well barry keoghan's disfigured joker face is meant to be a birth defect that forces his version of the character into a permanent smile he's got this congenital disease he can never stop smiling what if this is something that he's been touched by from birth and he's had this very dark reaction to it and he knows how to get into your head we know from the comics that hush's face is constantly wrapped in bandages like some sort of invisible man cosplay he does this to hide the fact that he's done surgery on his own face so if they wanted barry to suddenly not be the joker you could just say oh yeah these are bad plastic surgery scars also it's worth mentioning that thomas elliot does surgery on his own face to become bruce wayne he literally changes his face to become a doppelganger for bruce in a film universe where bruce is a recluse and hiding inside the batman cowl for like 95 of the runtime it leaves the door open for hush to take on bruce's identity out in the daylight to cause some havoc at which point the real bruce needs to deal with his and his family's demons to realize that hey being a privileged rich kid comes with responsibilities that you can't just dress up and punch through to avoid in fact that movie would force bruce to realize that bruce wayne based on all his money and privilege probably has more changing power than batman ever did with his fists okay that's kind of cool i recognize that i pay you to say that but i appreciate you doing it anyway we also need to consider age here joker in most media is meant to be older than batman by about 10 years whereas hush is meant to be batman's contemporary they grew up together as childhood frenemies at 29 barry kyogen is a good bit younger than 35 year old robert pattinson's batman that age gap could certainly work with a hush dynamic but it would definitely be a bit unusual to see it played out in the form of joker and lastly during the end credits of this new movie you're hinted to go to a website www.rotalata the winged rat which is meant to be the riddler's sight it's actually been kicking around since the movie's early trailers but now it's constantly being updated with new riddler files so you can dig around inside his conspiracy lots of them are just really cool assets from the movie you get close-up shots of riddler's sanctuary some of the surveillance photos that he took of the corrupt elite martha wayne being treated at arkham and of course plenty of ciphers to solve for when you finished your daily dose of wordle i got it in for today five thanks for rubbing it in anyway this file is super cool and i highly recommend that everyone watching check it out but there are two files in the zip drive that i wanted to call out specifically first in picture zero one we get a man missing a face wrapped in bandages that could be his victims just wrapped up in duct tape agreed but i just wanted to point it out what's much more interesting though is riddler's journal it's a nine-page pdf where we see his descent and madness it starts with him suspecting that something's wrong in the city he's frustrated by the elite sitting on their thrones and he's determined to find the corruption that exists under the surface by the end though he's filling the pages with line after line of renewal i know what i must become and no escape just page after page after page of rambling and scribbling looking at it it was suspicious to me that they included so much of this so i decided to look closer and when you do you can start to make out some shapes things that kind of look like the shape of eyeballs so i darken the image and you clearly get faces two strong points for batman's ears his glaring eyes and someone lurking behind him is it just the riddler sure maybe probably but i like to think that this whole rabbit hole of an arg is hinting at what's coming next and that face to me is very similar to what we see of hush legitimately that's pretty cool regardless of whether it's hush or not here's the tl dr do i think that barry kyogen is likely meant to be the joker yes he is again that was outright confirmed but i hope that he isn't batman's rogues gallery is stacked with amazing characters that were all built to reveal interesting facets of the character i get why everyone is in such a rush to pull out a joker but guess what story matters more the dark knight worked not just because the joker was in it but because the team making the movie understood why the joker was in it and spoiler alert the answer wasn't just to sell tickets don't get me wrong i love the character i thought the new joker movie was great but we see him all the time batman has 26 animated films and joker makes an appearance in at least 16 of them that's 61 in live action movies we've seen the joker five times in the last 30 years on tv gotham gave us like three people who weren't technically the joker but were obviously kind of the joker i'm just excited to see something different with these characters and this new batman movie started to give me it and i want that to continue when i look at the world of this new movie hush feels like a perfect fit there's comic lore connecting him to the riddler the easter eggs that have already been laid out for mr jay could just as easily transplant over onto thomas elliott oh scarred bruce wayne doppelganger and honestly i think the story potential there is just as strong if not stronger in the end my point is that i love all these characters and sometimes by seeing less of one it allows us to see more of all of them but hey that's just a theory a film theory and cut um so i just leave right matt didn't really say goodbye so i just kind of stayed for the end card um oh end card well i guess you can click this video here that'll that'll take you to the theory or there's this one right here you can click that one as well that'd be neat uh subscribe you know helps us keep our jobs i guess i will see my way out
film theory not what he seems the batman 2022

Source : The Film Theorists