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View Poll Results: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?
Protagonist 7 19.44%
Antagonist 7 19.44%
Both 22 61.11%
I Don't Know 0 0%
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Old 04-20-2014, 10:08 PM   #1
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Default Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Well, I thought this topic personally deserved a thread of its own to discuss about.

So in light of Snyder's newest interview, regarding on how the idea of Batman being in this film came up when he was trying to figure out on who Superman should face after General Zod, I've wondered as to whether in this new take of the character, we should see Batman portrayed as more of an antagonist within the story.

We know that Ben's Batman will be a seasoned crime-fighter, but one who is also weary.

Some, like myself, have theorized that it'll be by his encounter with Superman, that even helps Batman gain a renewed spirit in his crusade against injustice and such.

So my question to everyone here is if people think on whether Batman, in this film, should be portrayed as a antagonist or protagonist in the story? Or maybe both? Ala, in the same way that Magneto was portrayed in "First Class". It would certainly be a new way of presenting the character on the big screen, and bring a new twist to "The Dark Knight Returns" qualities that Snyder had mentioned that he wants to take some liberties from.


Thoughts?

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:18 PM   #2
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Define antagonist in the context of this movie?

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:24 PM   #3
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Define antagonist in the context of this movie?
Well I've been using this case as an example for months, but basically, he'd be to Superman on what "The Rock" was to Vin Diesal's character in "Fast Five".

And another example would be like what Karl Urban's character was to Bruce Willis's character in "Red".

So basically, not a "villain" for the story, but certainly not a friend or ally for a majority of the film.

Batman would be after Superman for a majority of the film, causing him problems along the way, and it's only after a climactic showdown of some sort, mixed in with some heroic deed and big realization, that Batman decides not to see Superman as the enemy..

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:57 PM   #4
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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Well I've been using this case as an example for months, but basically, he'd be to Superman on what "The Rock" was to Vin Diesal's character in "Fast Five".

And another example would be like what Karl Urban's character was to Bruce Willis's character in "Red".

So basically, not a "villain" for the story, but certainly not a friend or ally for a majority of the film.

Batman would be after Superman for a majority of the film, causing him problems along the way, and it's only after a climactic showdown of some sort, mixed in with some heroic deed and big realization, that Batman decides not to see Superman as the enemy..
Damn, I haven't seen any of those films, LOL.

OK, so you mean kinda like the role Hardy and the military played in MOS? Hmmm, I just don't see them being "enemies" for too long, Batman and Superman. I mean, I have to assume that some time will have passed between the ending of MOS and the start of BvS, so the public should be aware of Superman' s heroic deeds like stopping bank robberies or what have you. Bats realizes that Superman is a good guy but he doesn't fully trust him because of the alien invasion. However, they are forced together and the story goes from there....The only way I can see Bats being an antagonist for an extended period of time is if they depict him as an extremely paranoid psycho who would rather the alien went home, but that's a little too close to Luthor...

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Old 04-20-2014, 11:40 PM   #5
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Damn, I haven't seen any of those films, LOL.

OK, so you mean kinda like the role Hardy and the military played in MOS? Hmmm, I just don't see them being "enemies" for too long, Batman and Superman. I mean, I have to assume that some time will have passed between the ending of MOS and the start of BvS, so the public should be aware of Superman' s heroic deeds like stopping bank robberies or what have you. Bats realizes that Superman is a good guy but he doesn't fully trust him because of the alien invasion. However, they are forced together and the story goes from there....The only way I can see Bats being an antagonist for an extended period of time is if they depict him as an extremely paranoid psycho who would rather the alien went home, but that's a little too close to Luthor...

lol; true, though this film could be a case where we see a take on Batman that starts out being a figure that's become so weary from fighting, that he's pretty much lost his way and is growing dangerously close of becoming what Lex has already become.

It's possible that Lex may even orchestrate something that would make Superman look like he was the bad guy by framing him for something, which convinces everyone, including Batman (somewhat) that Superman is a problem.

Plus, being paranoid has always been Batman's thing.

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Old 04-21-2014, 12:01 AM   #6
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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lol; true, though this film could be a case where we see a take on Batman that starts out being a figure that's become so weary from fighting, that he's pretty much lost his way and is growing dangerously close of becoming what Lex has already become.

It's possible that Lex may even orchestrate something that would make Superman look like he was the bad guy by framing him for something, which convinces everyone, including Batman (somewhat) that Superman is a problem.

Plus, being paranoid has always been Batman's thing.
Well, I just hope Batman is not portrayed as a jerk, but that might be the idea, at least at the beginning. Frankly I don't care about these two being rivals so I hope the "versus" stuff is resolved halfway through the movie

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:18 PM   #7
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

I think that he should be portrayed as first being a antagonist with lex being a genuine good guy. as the movie advances lex becomes more of a villain and bruce is on superman's side.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:58 PM   #8
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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I think that he should be portrayed as first being a antagonist with lex being a genuine good guy. as the movie advances lex becomes more of a villain and bruce is on superman's side.
I like this idea as well. I would actually like for Superman to kind of respect what he thinks Lex is and Batman as more of the threat, and then as the film goes on the positions switch and Bruce is the one he begins to respect and Lex's true colors show.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:22 PM   #9
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Antagonist. I like the idea of Bruce and Lex teaming up to rebuild Metropolis and treating Superman publicly, and privately, as a threat. But the film should still be from Supes perspective. Then we gradually see Bruce start to side with Clark over Lex, leaving Lex as the only antagonist by the end of the film.

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Old 04-21-2014, 12:30 AM   #10
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Antagonist. I like the idea of Bruce and Lex teaming up to rebuild Metropolis and treating Superman publicly, and privately, as a threat. But the film should still be from Supes perspective. Then we gradually see Bruce start to side with Clark over Lex, leaving Lex as the only antagonist by the end of the film.
This.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:42 PM   #11
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Someone here had the genius idea to make Superman the antagonist (in the sense that heroes and the world are against him), but unfortunately, the creative team won't have that much cajones to pull it off.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:48 PM   #12
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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Someone here had the genius idea to make Superman the antagonist (in the sense that heroes and the world are against him), but unfortunately, the creative team won't have that much cajones to pull it off.
I remember reading about that as well, especially when people really thought that the Flash would be in this film as well.

Honestly, I wouldn't even mind seeing a "passing of the torch" scenario involving Batman and Superman.

I mean since Batman started his career, supposedly a lot earlier, than Superman did, it wouldn't be hard to believe that maybe Bruce (at one time) thought that helping the world was all on his shoulders and his burden.

But after so many years of fighting against Crime and producing less than desirable results, he grows to feel disheartened about his whole crusade.

So it's only after his encounter and experiences with Superman, where he ends up feeling that he's not along in his efforts and that should anything happen to him (Bruce), he knows that he can trust Superman to still be around and protect the Earth in ways he couldn't.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:53 PM   #13
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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Someone here had the genius idea to make Superman the antagonist (in the sense that heroes and the world are against him), but unfortunately, the creative team won't have that much cajones to pull it off.
Well I do think the world will somewhat be against him at first. At least I could see public opinion being split 50/50 mimicking the fan reaction to the first film. All the arguments that we've had about MoS could be exactly what characters in the film argue about (killing Zod, destroying parts of Metropolis, civilian deaths, etc...)

But I think/hope that even though public opinion will be probably be mixed, that the film is still told from Clark's perspective that way he's never shown as an antagonist.

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Old 04-20-2014, 11:02 PM   #14
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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Well I do think the world will somewhat be against him at first. At least I could see public opinion being split 50/50 mimicking the fan reaction to the first film. All the arguments that we've had about MoS could be exactly what characters in the film argue about (killing Zod, destroying parts of Metropolis, civilian deaths, etc...)

But I think/hope that even though public opinion will be probably be mixed, that the film is still told from Clark's perspective that way he's never shown as an antagonist.

That sounds like a good idea..I like the idea of showing Clark's battle over the guilt of the events in MOS contrasted with the lightheartedness of the Metropolis ensemble INCLUDING Jimmy Olsen.

I hope that Lex Luthor creates a robot army for Wonder Woman to stop or something.

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Old 04-20-2014, 10:58 PM   #15
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Someone here had the genius idea to make Superman the antagonist (in the sense that heroes and the world are against him), but unfortunately, the creative team won't have that much cajones to pull it off.
I don't like this idea. I don't like when something is portrayed one way when the audience knows it's the other way. Like a person being framed and every other character thinking that person did it, but the audience knows that person didn't do it because they already showed us the real killer. The story becomes frustrating and the characters come off as stupid.

In that scenario, Superman is portrayed as the antagonist and the other heroes and the world are against him, but we the audience know Superman ain't a damn antagonist. The story becomes predictable and frustrating and the other characters come off a stupid for not knowing something the audience knows.

I think you can only pull that off when there is a degree of ignorance shared between both the audience and the characters. Is he the real killer? Is he really the villain? Is he really behind everything? Both the audience and the characters need to be having those types of questions swirl in their minds to pull that off.


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Old 04-21-2014, 04:01 PM   #16
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I don't like this idea. I don't like when something is portrayed one way when the audience knows it's the other way. Like a person being framed and every other character thinking that person did it, but the audience knows that person didn't do it because they already showed us the real killer. The story becomes frustrating and the characters come off as stupid.

In that scenario, Superman is portrayed as the antagonist and the other heroes and the world are against him, but we the audience know Superman ain't a damn antagonist. The story becomes predictable and frustrating and the other characters come off a stupid for not knowing something the audience knows.

I think you can only pull that off when there is a degree of ignorance shared between both the audience and the characters. Is he the real killer? Is he really the villain? Is he really behind everything? Both the audience and the characters need to be having those types of questions swirl in their minds to pull that off.
That's a poor analogy. I'm not saying that Superman being an antagonist means that he has to be a ****** plot twist "I'm a bad guy/oh, I'm a good guy now!"character. That's not what I'm saying at all. Setting up Superman as an antagonist means that Superman is met with resistance from other heroes, the public, and the world. Which you've already mentioned, but you somehow assume that it means the characters have to be stupid in order for that plot to work, which I wholeheartedly disagree with.

You mention the audience, let's not forget we're coming off of Man of Steel where the audience has mixed perceptions of Superman. This creates an interesting dynamic in that the audience automatically associates with the other heroes (Batman and Wonder Woman) and the rest of the world, while at the same time, questioning Superman after the events of Man of Steel. Then you have characters like Lex Luthor, who feels threatened by his presence, so much so that you can have him be in investigation mode, to find out that Superman killed Zod (aka his fellow citizen), which leads to the whole "if Superman can kill his people, what stops him from killing us" campaign against Superman. It doesn't have to be like my idea, but the whole is to show how antagonism isn't as narrow as you view it.

In other words: antagonism does not mean that Superman has to be forced to fit a rather narrow villain trope, as you've outlined. You can create a villain that has justifiable motives...or even better, you can create an antagonist who has the ability change people's perception of him, which is what this movie should try to aim for now that he's dealing with Metropolis, Smallville's destruction...and the world's reaction to him. No superhero movie to my knowledge has done any of that, so it'd be a fresh story too.

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Old 04-21-2014, 04:08 PM   #17
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

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That's a poor analogy. I'm not saying that Superman being an antagonist means that he has to be a ****** plot twist "I'm a bad guy/oh, I'm a good guy now!"character. That's not what I'm saying at all. Setting up Superman as an antagonist means that Superman is met with resistance from other heroes, the public, and the world. Which you've already mentioned, but you somehow assume that it means the characters have to be stupid in order for that plot to work, which I wholeheartedly disagree with.

You mention the audience, let's not forget we're coming off of Man of Steel where the audience has mixed perceptions of Superman. This creates an interesting dynamic in that the audience automatically associates with the other heroes (Batman and Wonder Woman) and the rest of the world, while at the same time, questioning Superman after the events of Man of Steel. Then you have characters like Lex Luthor, who feels threatened by his presence, so much so that you can have him be in investigation mode, to find out that Superman killed Zod (aka his fellow citizen), which leads to the whole "if Superman can kill his people, what stops him from killing us" campaign against Superman. It doesn't have to be like my idea, but the whole is to show how antagonism isn't as narrow as you view it.

In other words: antagonism does not mean that Superman has to be forced to fit a rather narrow villain trope, as you've outlined. You can create a villain that has justifiable motives...or even better, you can create an antagonist who has the ability change people's perception of him, which is what this movie should try to aim for now that he's dealing with Metropolis, Smallville's destruction...and the world's reaction to him. No superhero movie to my knowledge has done any of that, so it'd be a fresh story too.
That's pretty much what i was thinking too.

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Old 04-21-2014, 05:21 PM   #18
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That's a poor analogy. I'm not saying that Superman being an antagonist means that he has to be a ****** plot twist "I'm a bad guy/oh, I'm a good guy now!"character. That's not what I'm saying at all. Setting up Superman as an antagonist means that Superman is met with resistance from other heroes, the public, and the world. Which you've already mentioned, but you somehow assume that it means the characters have to be stupid in order for that plot to work, which I wholeheartedly disagree with.

You mention the audience, let's not forget we're coming off of Man of Steel where the audience has mixed perceptions of Superman. This creates an interesting dynamic in that the audience automatically associates with the other heroes (Batman and Wonder Woman) and the rest of the world, while at the same time, questioning Superman after the events of Man of Steel. Then you have characters like Lex Luthor, who feels threatened by his presence, so much so that you can have him be in investigation mode, to find out that Superman killed Zod (aka his fellow citizen), which leads to the whole "if Superman can kill his people, what stops him from killing us" campaign against Superman. It doesn't have to be like my idea, but the whole is to show how antagonism isn't as narrow as you view it.

In other words: antagonism does not mean that Superman has to be forced to fit a rather narrow villain trope, as you've outlined. You can create a villain that has justifiable motives...or even better, you can create an antagonist who has the ability change people's perception of him, which is what this movie should try to aim for now that he's dealing with Metropolis, Smallville's destruction...and the world's reaction to him. No superhero movie to my knowledge has done any of that, so it'd be a fresh story too.
Didn't TDKR do that?

One thing about TDKR is they didn't try to push the issue of Batman murdering Dent. Gotham was against him, but the story wasn't framed around something we knew wasn't true, and all the important characters were on his side. There was even a character that was able to read through that BS story and come to Batman's aid. Honestly I'd rather Batman and Wonder Woman be the Blake of the story, the character that doesn't believe the narrative that's being pushed and comes to the hero's aid.

If you're talking about doing something like that, then I don't mind. I just don't want them to push the issue too much. I don't want to think for even a second that "man these characters are dumb if they believe that", especially if we're talking about Batman and Wonder Woman. If it's just a perception thing where the world views Superman as reckless and a dangerous threat, that's fine, but I don't want Batman and Wonder Woman believing someone's narrative, even if it's the cunning Lex Luthor.

Basically I view the world and other heroes/main characters as two different entities. The world can have their perceptions shaped by someone like Lex, I don't mind that, that's a big part of his character, to be able to do that. The world is stupid, they'd let fear drive their actions. But WW and Batman? I don't like that at all. I don't like the thought of Superman being alone or Superman vs the world. If you're going to go down that path, I believe it's important to have any and all heroes be on Superman's side from the very beginning. Not only just the heroes, but the characters that were close to the events that happened in MOS, Lois obviously, but also Perry White, Jenny, Lombard, Swanwick, etc...If someone wants to shape the world's perception of Superman, that's fine, but all those characters need to be on his side, else the thought of "man these characters are stupid" will creep in.

Remember how Hardy and his soldiers were firing on Superman initially? They viewed him as a threat. That is how the perceptions of the people of the MOS world should be. Initially they are like what Hardy was like at first, distrusting, willing to extinguish the "threat", but after the events of the movie? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReQFQSGVbS4


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Old 04-21-2014, 11:32 PM   #19
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Didn't TDKR do that?

One thing about TDKR is they didn't try to push the issue of Batman murdering Dent. Gotham was against him, but the story wasn't framed around something we knew wasn't true, and all the important characters were on his side. There was even a character that was able to read through that BS story and come to Batman's aid. Honestly I'd rather Batman and Wonder Woman be the Blake of the story, the character that doesn't believe the narrative that's being pushed and comes to the hero's aid.

If you're talking about doing something like that, then I don't mind. I just don't want them to push the issue too much. I don't want to think for even a second that "man these characters are dumb if they believe that", especially if we're talking about Batman and Wonder Woman. If it's just a perception thing where the world views Superman as reckless and a dangerous threat, that's fine, but I don't want Batman and Wonder Woman believing someone's narrative, even if it's the cunning Lex Luthor.

Basically I view the world and other heroes/main characters as two different entities. The world can have their perceptions shaped by someone like Lex, I don't mind that, that's a big part of his character, to be able to do that. The world is stupid, they'd let fear drive their actions. But WW and Batman? I don't like that at all. I don't like the thought of Superman being alone or Superman vs the world. If you're going to go down that path, I believe it's important to have any and all heroes be on Superman's side from the very beginning. Not only just the heroes, but the characters that were close to the events that happened in MOS, Lois obviously, but also Perry White, Jenny, Lombard, Swanwick, etc...If someone wants to shape the world's perception of Superman, that's fine, but all those characters need to be on his side, else the thought of "man these characters are stupid" will creep in.

Remember how Hardy and his soldiers were firing on Superman initially? They viewed him as a threat. That is how the perceptions of the people of the MOS world should be. Initially they are like what Hardy was like at first, distrusting, willing to extinguish the "threat", but after the events of the movie? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReQFQSGVbS4

The Dark Knight Rises didn’t even do anything close to what I had thought of. Only because Batman intentionally set himself up to be hated by Gotham and its Police Force, which is not what I want Superman to do. I want it to be more of a burden of proof kind of plot, which Batman in TDKR had the luxury of not having to prove himself. However, I do think The Dark Knight Rises is somewhat of a poor example considering that its script is flawed in that Blake somehow reaches the conclusion that Batman didn’t kill Harvey Dent based on convenient reasoning. I wouldn’t want the heroes to be written like that because if going against Superman makes them lazy, then writing them your way makes them come across as conveniences.

Having said that, it begs the question, why would the heroes be on Superman’s side? It’s a bit too convenient to write the heroes on Superman’s side. Batman is known to be paranoid, so it makes no sense that he would suddenly side with Superman without being suspicious of his actions. Wonder Woman might be someone who legitimately sides with him considering that they both have something in common: being alien to Earth. However, she could also antagonize Superman if she finds problems with how he handled Smallville and Metropolis. You also have the people in MOS like you said, but they’d likely represent a small minority. Someone will come up and say “Look at what Zod and Superman’s battle did to our city. Why should we trust him?”

Hardy died, so Superman doesn’t really have the military presence to back him up when it comes to governmental affairs. Hell, even Swanwick was still skeptical of him when he said, “how do we know you won’t act against America’s interests?” I don’t think Swanwick is entirely convinced that he can trust Superman, to be honest. Furthermore, it’s implying that there will be people uncomfortable with Superman’s arrival. That idea in itself is definitely going to be expanded upon, especially in the context of world politics, and the question what does America possessing a superhuman mean for the rest of the world?

As for the general audience, I still stand by the assertion that it is mixed. Heck, even people here had problems with Superman’s characterization.

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Old 04-20-2014, 11:36 PM   #20
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Antagonist in the beginning, then once he finds out whats really going on, him and clark finally team up.

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Old 04-20-2014, 11:48 PM   #21
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Antagonist in the beginning, then once he finds out whats really going on, him and clark finally team up.
I have no doubt that this is how it will go down.

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Old 04-20-2014, 11:50 PM   #22
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I have no doubt that this is how it will go down.
its really the only way they can do it.

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What if Batman isn't in it at all?
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Then it will be just like The Dark Knight Rises! :o
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Old 04-21-2014, 12:21 AM   #23
herolee10
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Batman could very well be the "Winter Soldier" character of this film, minus the mass carnage of bodies that the character killed in TWS of course.lol

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Old 04-21-2014, 12:35 AM   #24
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Why would Batman be a direct antagonist within the context of the film itself?

That makes little to no sense.

Some conflict between he and Superman, sure. They'd both see each other as antagonists. But Batman being an actual antagonist? Not so much.

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Old 04-21-2014, 01:07 AM   #25
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Default Re: Should Batman be portrayed as a Protagonist or Antagonist in this film?

Remember, there has to be a reason for Batman/Bruce wayne to even be in Metropolis. My guess is that Lex Luthor brings Bruce Wayne there, probably to help with rebuilding the city. I don't think Superman is going to Gotham.

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