I know BATMAN V. SUPERMAN doesn’t come out until next March, but like many people, I’m already SuperHyped (see what I did?). Anyway, this week on What to Stream Right Now, we’re taking a look at the man in the black corner, Batman. However, I’m not sure when we’ll ever have a Superman episode since Netflix still doesn’t stream SMALLVILLE. Make sure to check out Episodes 3 and 4 if you’re not a big Batman fan.
BATMAN – Dir. Tim Burton (1989)
Obviously we have to start with Tim Burton’s classic, BATMAN. Everyone loves the Dark Knight Trilogy with Christian Bale, but I really believe the younger generation of comic book movie fans are missing out on the ridiculous and campy fun of the 1989 Batman flick. Michael Keaton stars as Bruce Wayne and while he may not appear as polished as Bale, he certainly pulls off the rich-boy persona well. Prior to this role, Keaton was primarily a comedy actor, which led many to believe that he would be a poor fit for the caped crusader. However, he really knocks it out of the park as both Wayne and Batman. And he doesn’t have a demonic and scratchy voice!
And while the movie is called “Batman”, it’s apparent early on that this film is about The Joker. Jack Nicholson plays Jack Napier, a mob boss who falls into a vat of toxic something (quite original for the time) and comes out a little stranger. Again, Heath Ledger may be a fan favorite to today’s audience, but Nicholson’s portrayal of the character is still considered a modern classic. The story follows the rise and fall of Batman’s arch nemesis and even with a few artistic liberties here and there, Burton pulls off an enthralling story about one of America’s most loved villains.
GOTHAM – Season One (2014)
If you’re only here for Batman then maybe this show isn’t for you, because he’s only a child at the point of this show. GOTHAM follows the career of Detective James Gordon starting at the death of Bruce Wayne’s parents. Throughout the season we’re introduced to characters that will later become villains to the Dark Knight such as Selina Kyle (or Catwoman), Edward Nygma (The Riddler), Harvey Dent (Two-Face), and most prominently Oswald Cobblepot who begins his transformation into The Penguin rather early in the season. This is probably what makes the show so much fun to watch. Sure it tells great stories and has incredibly interesting characters, but it’s also just great to be fed little easter eggs and nods to the Batman mythos.
Season two just started last week, so if you aren’t caught up it may be a little difficult for you (yes, this is a challenge), but the show is definitely worth watching whether you’re a fan of the comics or just a fan of good TV in general.