Originally Posted by El Payaso
Yes. The 'iconism' of Superman has very much made him a bidimensional character many times. As you say, many times he merely throws safe and proven pre-fabricated messages.
"I loved THE KILLING JOKE... It's my favorite. It's the first comic I'0ve ever loved." - Tim Burton
As printed in the Deluxe Edition.
Wouldn't the Studabaker and autogyro you mentioned to bash Burton actually be the "surface elements" instead of his personality?
He didn't read the Killing joke when he filmed Batman, he didn't read any comics. He may have read it afterward but putting a blurb in the deluxe edition 20 years later is not the same thing.
At the 6:02 mark, Burton says "I wasn't a comic book fan but I was a fan of the image". He doesn't mention a single comic book from that time as influencing the look, or his take of the movie.
Also no, The weapons and vehicles are a touchstone of their time but part of Batman's image comes down to the gadgets, the weapons. Burton's Bruce Wayne was not the suave debonair millionaire playboy of the comics, his Batman wasn't the controlled methodical, ready for anything hero. He was a neurotic mess that walked , blanked eyed through a hail of bullets, and then instead of slipping off into the shadows and chasing the Joker's gang, he stared doe-eyed at Vicki Vale and ran off.