'The Batman' Is Already a New Type of Bruce Wayne

Murray Clark
·2-min read
Photo credit: Mega
Photo credit: Mega

From Esquire

Reboots are the norm. They're extremely popular, too. So for every roll of the eyes at Captain America: The High School Years, there are ten wide eyes genuinely excited at the prospect of seeing Steve Rogers chat absolute fire to his romantic interest on MSN only to then ignore her the next day. Batman is no exception. What's more, this is no rinse and repeat. Cloverfield director Matt Reeves has promised his caped crusader to be in max "detective mode", with Robert Pattinson's casting as Bruce Wayne given the big stamp of approval by his predecessor in Christian Bale. That's probably because his tortured billionaire has much better coats.

For while Christopher Nolan's pitch black trilogy is pretty special, Bruce Wayne leaned on the forgettable textbook wardrobe of every other well-heeled one percenter: quiet knitwear, some jeans, maybe some smart trousers, and a couple of golf-club friendly polo shirts. The Batman (this one, the Pattinson one) does no such thing.

Photo credit: Mega
Photo credit: Mega

Recently released shots from the set are taken not from the exit of a dramatic Armani show in Milan. They were, in fact, taken in Liverpool, depicting the ensemble cast (which includes Zoë Kravitz, Colin Farrell and John Turturro) in the stuff that sits on the more current, cooler end of menswear. So no Steve Jobs roll-necks. Instead, we've huge overcoats that are more Balenciaga, less city banker; Nineties lids that point more to an angst-ridden Japanese anime hero than they do crew cutted Action Men; the width and shoulder pads of hotshot lawyers in a courtroom drama, but just with the expression of hotshot lawyers that've lost their first case.

In a franchise that has increasingly moved towards the emotional over the spectacle (Batman & Robin, despite the pomp of a gorilla-costumed Uma Thurman doing burlesque, is not to be repeated), showy costumes are often sidelined as a distraction from the DRAMA and CONFLICT of poor Mr Wayne. But Pattinson has proven time and again that he has the acting chops to pull said inner turmoil off. Claire Denis's grisly sci-fi High Life was full of spectacle and drama, as was shanty psychodrama The Lighthouse. Pattinson really can do both.

So get excited. Bombastic clothes aren't always there to paper over a bad plot. They also make a well-worn reboot very nice to watch indeed.

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