DC FanDome: Breaking down hype and hesitation

There was a ton of movie news over the weekend and a lot of it came from DC’s virtual convention titled FanDome. The event had trailers and details released on several upcoming superhero movies.

From Batman to Flash, there’s a whole lot to breakdown from FanDome. So, here’s my recap on the whole thing.

The Batman

Big man on campus first. Arguably the most talked about movie trailer was for “The Batman.”

The details:

  • Release date of Oct. 1, 2021.
  • Director is Matt Reeves.
  • Writers are Matt Reeves and Peter Craig.
  • Robert Pattinson is Bruce Wayne/Batman.
  • Zoe Kravitz is Selina Kyle/Catwoman.
  • Colin Farrell is Oswald Cobblepot/The Penguin.
  • Paul Dano is Edward Nashton/The Riddler.
  • Andy Serkis is Alfred Pennyworth.
  • Jeffrey Wright is Commissioner Gordon.

This trailer had almost everyone on Twitter hyped, except for a few. I’m included in that few. Many people were so happy for a “Batman” film that’s dark, decadent and gritty.

That’s kind of what we’ve had for the last 20 years, though. The Batman from “Dawn of Justice” physically marked people and brutally beat his opponents. That Bruce Wayne was also a much more melancholy interpretation of the character.

The Batman featured in the “Dark Knight” willingly invaded civil liberties with his cell phone system. He was also taking on a murderous anarchistic terrorist whose face was sliced into a permanent smile.

The Batman featured in this new trailer is dark, brutal and brooding. It’s what many think of when they think of Batman. That’s probably because it’s how Batman has been since it was rebooted in the early 2000s by Christopher Nolan, and it was like that before with the two Tim Burton movies.

Film critic Bob Chipman put it pretty plainly on Twitter:

It feels almost as if this trailer was going out of its way to push the edginess up because it wanted to out ‘dark and gritty’ previous caped crusader flicks, but it kind of detracted from the experience in my view.

The music, the 10-second beat down, it all comes across as excessive.

With all of that said, there are two things to address. One, for the most part I don’t like judging movies too much by their trailers. Two, there are some things shown here that I liked, so let’s go over those.

Matt Reeves

I am a big fan of Matt Reeves. He directed “Dawn of the Planet of the Apes” and “War for the Planet of the Apes,” two films which make up one of the best trilogies out there. His work on those movies was phenomenal.

He also directed the great monster movie “Cloverfield” and a respectable U.S. remake of “Let the Right One In.” I trust that he will do a good job.

Robert Pattinson

Since Pattinson’s work in the “Twilight” films, he’s been busy with several dramas, earning recognition for his work in movies like “The Rover,” “Good Time,” “Maps to the Stars” and “The Lost City of Z.”

The guy can act, and it was especially proven in last year’s “The Lighthouse.” He should be fine in the role.

Colin Farrell

I think Farrell has had some misses in his career, “Total Recall,” “Winter’s Tale,” and this summer’s “Artemis Fowl” to name a few. However, the guy never phones it in, he is talented and when given the right material, he can really shine.

Jeffrey Wright

Wright, a Golden Globe winner, is really talented, but is also, unfortunately, a bit underrated. He’s consistently, good, though. From his performance in “Source Code” to his portrayal of Colin Powell in “W.,” Wright is always reliable.

The new Batsuit


It looks pretty good. The cowl looks good and intimidating, and the grey suit seems to make the bat symbol more visible. It’s a good mix of high-tech armor and superhero style, I’m a fan.

Bruce’s adjustment to superhero life

It seemed like in “The Dark Knight” series, Batman was kind of thrust into things really fast. Not long after he started his side gig, the Scarecrow, the League of Shadows and a short while later, the Joker, started terrorizing Gotham. “Batman Begins” and “The Dark Knight” don’t give time for Bruce to really learn the ropes.

A Bruce here who is somewhat still learning how to be a symbol that instills fear into criminals, solve crimes with detective work, and handle Wayne Enterprises, all while managing his own personal struggles of loss, can make for a solid superhero drama. Give me that in the movie and I’ll probably be happy.

A “Static Shock” flick

Hell yes! I’m all for a “Static Shock” film. I’m a visual media guy, so my experience of the character is from the cartoon series rather than the comic books. Regardless, though, the essence of the character and the story have a lot of promise.


Static is a great character who can work well on the big screen and lightning powers are just awesome, as we’ve seen before.

Black Adam

The Details:

  • Director – Jaume Collett Serra.
  • Writer – Adam Sztykiel.
  • Dwayne Johnson to star as Black Adam.
  • Release date – Dec. 22, 2021.

I have to admit, I don’t really have that much to say about “Black Adam.” As previously stated, I haven’t read many comic books, I’ve always been more of a manga guy myself, so I’m walking in kind of blind to this.

I can say, though, that I’ve been a fan of the work from Collett Serra in the past. His films “Run All Night” in 2015 with Liam Neeson, along with the shark thriller “The Shallows” both earned positive scores from me.

I’ve also said in the past and will continue to say that Johnson brings great charisma to the screen in whatever he’s in. I’m interested in this one.

Wonder Woman

The details:

  • Director – Patty Jenkins.
  • Writers – Geoff Johns and Patty Jenkins.
  • Gal Gadot starring as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman.
  • Chris Pine as Captain Steve Trevor.
  • Kristen Wiig as Barbara Minerva/Cheetah.
  • Release date – Oct. 2, 2020.

I really like “Man of Steel,” but I think we can all agree that “Wonder Woman” was the first film that was universally well received from the DC series. Here’s a look at the new trailer released over the weekend.

Few thoughts on this. No. 1, it looks great, Wonder Woman swinging from lightning with her lasso is amazing. It’s also great to see Wonder Woman’s new golden armor.

I have to say I’m also happy to see Chris Pine back with his character Steve. He’s probably going to be back thanks to some strange techno-babble, but regardless, he was a blast in the first film and I’m glad he’s here again. I’m intrigued by Kristen Wiig as the villain, too. While she’s been mostly known for her work in comedy, she showed a darker side in “Mother!”

The Suicide Squad

Unlike the 2016 film, this picture featuring the villain team will have “The” in the title! OK, on a serious note. The 2016 “Suicide Squad” film was a total mess but was carried a bit by having strong actors like Margot Robbie and Will Smith.

This movie will likely be an improvement thanks to James Gunn writing and directing. He proved himself with both “Guardians of the Galaxy” movies and I trust him here.

The cast looks pretty fun, too. Robbie has basically made Harley Quinn hers the same way Robert Downey Jr. did with Tony Stark. Her being included is already a plus.

Adding in Taika Waititi, Idris Elba and John Cena to the mix should be fun as well. A more coherent film about a group of anti-heroes on a deadly mission should work.

The Flash

The details:

  • Director – Andy Muschietti
  • Writer – Christina Hodson
  • Ezra Miller starring as Barry Allen.
  • Release date: June 3, 2022.

Ezra Miller is expected to return as Barry Allen, AKA the Flash. According to reports, Miller will be joined by Ben Affleck and Michael Keaton, and the two are both expected to portray their versions of Batman. This is possible because “The Flash” will apparently be based on the “Flashpoint” comic story, where the titular character can travel through time.

Miller was clearly the comic relief in “Justice League” and he did pretty well working off others for humor. The question is if he’ll be able to shoulder a movie on his own. I am looking forward to seeing previous versions of Batman come back though.

Justice League THE SNYDER CUT

Yes it will finally be coming out. It was announced that Zack Snyder’s true vision for the “Justice League” will be released in a format of four one hour episodes on HBO Max.

Wow, four hours of story. It’s almost like the DC universe should have been more fleshed out with additional standalone movies before the team-ups started.

Anyways. I can’t say I’m all that excited for this. It might be a bit more coherent and the story may have more room to breathe, but in the end it will likely still be the same mediocre experience the original “Justice League” picture was.

Unfortunately, no news on a reboot of “Green Lantern.” It’s really too bad because it’s such a creative superhero. It’s been nearly a decade now since that failed version in 2011. Take another shot at it, please DC and Warner Bros.

Author: Matthew Liedke

Journalist and film critic in Minnesota. Graduate of Rainy River College and Minnesota State University in Moorhead. Outside of movies I also enjoy sports, craft beers and the occasional video game.

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