So I’ve decided that some movies should be re-made so as to accommodate my new fetish: Watching Benedict Cumberbatch hurt people.
Here is a list of those movies, in no particular order:
Because Benedict Cumberbatch already killed Robocop with his bare hands, and they’re planning on remaking it anyway, so why not, you know?
2. Terminator 2
The original Terminator would be OK too, but I really think of Benedict Cumberbatch as a liquid metal type of emotionless android rather than an old-school Schwarzenegger-type.
I don’t know much about Taken, except that Liam Neeson hurts a lot of people in it, so I would be fine with a shot-for-shot remake of Benedict Cumberbatch doing the same.
4. The Bourne movies
I know even less about the Bourne movies than I do about Taken, except that Matt Damon is not as attractive as Benedict Cumberbatch.
Not that I think The Thing needed to be remade, because it didn’t and it doesn’t, but I wouldn’t mind seeing Benedict Cumberbatch kill aliens with a flamethrower.
6. Sherlock Holmes
Both the first one and the other one, not that I think they’re good movies, but Benedict Cumberbatch makes a wonderful Sherlock Holmes and I wuv him.
Because, unlike Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Benedict Cumberbatch doesn’t look permanently teenaged, so I could totally buy him as a masked avenger.
Hah, no, I’m kidding. Versus is practically perfect in every way.
9. The Matrix
10. Star Trek: Into Darkness
OK, I know this movie was just released, and also that Benedict Cumberbatch is actually in it, but now is the time for the producers to remedy their grievous error and re-insert the shower scene.
Dear Milligan (a character in The Mysterious Benedict Society, the books I’m currently reading to my daughter),
I love you.
Sure, part of it is because everybody else is so damned wholesome and sweet, because you live in a children’s book, but the other part of it is because you are the Batman of said children’s books. Actually, that’s the biggest part of it, because who doesn’t love Batman?
There are many wonderful things about you, from the way you wear disguises while kicking ass to the way you sometimes don’t wear disguises while kicking ass. Also, you seem to be pretty good with kids, which is awesome, because did I mention I’m reading your books to my daughter right now? Also, I’m pretty immature, so there’s that, too.
Now, I know you’re pretty busy what with going off on your secret spy missions and protecting the group of children under your care and kicking serious ass, but I hope you’d be able to make the time for a candlelit dinner. Or, if not that, maybe we could bomb a warehouse together? I mean an evil warehouse, of course, because lately I’ve been trying to use my powers for good. Or at least mediocrity.
Anyway, I’m up for a secret mission or two if you are! We could kick so much ass together, or you could, and I could try to stay out of the way and not get hit by any flying debris or murder pencils or whatever.
I’ll be waiting to hear from you!
I don’t wanna see Dark Knight Rises.
Not this weekend. Not ever. You see, I already saw the first two Christopher Nolan-helmed Batman movies, and I thought they were (small, wee, tiny little voice) boring.
So, yes, I’m a traitor to my geek-ish origins. Hell, I’m even un-American. I know it, you know it, we all know it. But if you sit back and admit it to yourself: Both Batman begins and The Dark Knight go on about 27 minutes too long, well past where you thought the movie should end, would end and rightfully was supposed to end, and you sat there and took it because Batman!
(Also, I hated that they wasted Two-Face, my favorite Batman villain. Gah! Such a terrible origin! Such a boring story arc!)
Feel free to leave your hate in the comments section. I know I deserve it.
Why, you ask?
Because I’m really running out of fictional characters that I’m familiar with to vie off against each other.
Also, because Batman and Sherlock Holmes are awesome.
Now shut up or make fictional character battle suggestions in the comments.
Physicality. Sherlock Holmes is a tall, thin, somewhat homely fellow, except for when he’s portrayed by Robert Downey Jr., who doesn’t seem that tall (and totally isn’t, according to IMdB) or when he’s portrayed by Benedict Cumberbatch, who is tall and super good-looking and perfect and I wuv him! (Wait, what was my point here?) Right, right. Batman is tall, dark and Bruce Wayne-y, and sometimes looks like Christian Bale, who is the epitome of masculine beauty. Winner? This, my dear friends, would be a tie except see the bit about Benedict Cumberbatch above, whom I love as much as a crazed fangirl can love a man who portrays her favorite fictional detective ever. Sherlock Holmes.
Better detecting abilities? Batman is the best detective in the whole DC universe. Like, what, his only competition is the Elongated Man, anyway. Sherlock Holmes is the best fictional detective of all time, ever, I don’t care what you mystery readers say, he always wins. Which means: Winner? Sherlock Holmes.
Better arse-kicking abilities? Sherlock Holmes is a cerebral sort of guy. Not that he’s not willing to pugilize (shut up, I’m making new words) a few ne’er-do-wells here and there, or bend a few iron pokers or what have you, but he’s more than happy to sit back and armchair detect if that’s all it requires. Batman, on the other hand, will hurt you so bad that 20 years ago, your momma feels a sharp pain. Winner? Batman.
More iconic costume? I know everyone immediately thought of the bat-nipples, and I want you to know that’s OK and I forgive you. Bat-nipples aside, the Bat costume sure is iconic. Although, toss on a trench coat, deerstalker cap and smoke a pipe, and everybody knows who you are at Halloween. Winner? Batman, by a bat-nipple.
More faithful sidekick? Batman’s faithful sidekick is Robin, except that Robin isn’t always the same person, and sometimes is a girl and sometimes gets killed and then brought back from the dead and then I don’t even know what. On the other hand, Sherlock Holmes’ faithful sidekick of lo these many years is, and always will be, Dr. John Watson, the faithfullest sidekick to ever kick. Sides. Whatever. Winner? Sherlock Holmes.
Cooler means of transportation? Does the word Batmobile mean anything to you? And, if not, you need to mainline some DC comics, stat! Winner? Batman.
Is a rational, reasonably functioning human being? Ha ha ha ha, question I came up with, you make me laugh. One guy dresses up as a bat to fight crime. The other is Sherlock Holmes. On a scale of 1 to rational human being, these guys are 1/10 of a percent short of being the Joker.
Speaking of the Joker, who has a more deadly arch-nemesis? No matter how much Sir Arthur Conan Doyle tried to play up Moriarty, he really hadn’t made that much of a splash in the Holmesian London scene prior to The Final Problem. On the other hand, the Joker murders people like serial killing is going out of style. Winner? Batman.
Holy crap, could Batman take this thing? Ha, you’d like to think so, wouldn’t you?
Hasn’t been ruined by Kevin Smith retroactively destroying everything good about Batman: Year One? I’ll never forgive you for that, Kevin Smith, you rat bastard. The goddamned Batman doesn’t wet himself. Winner? Sherlock Holmes.
Doesn’t have to be in dark and brooding movies to be awesome? Only on an excellent BBC series, amiright??? Winner? Sherlock Holmes.
Now you’re just stacking the questions. I am, at that.
Overall winner? Sherlock Holmes, by a slightly biased nose. That’s my nose. Biased. Right there. Biased. Whooooo! Go, Sherlock Holmes!
As I recently re-read my collection of Planetary, also known as One of the Best Damned Comic Books Ever!, I saved for last the great Planetary/Batman crossover: Night on Earth. Actually, I didn’t really save it for last. I read it first and then read it again after I’d read the others.
Because it’s awesome, that’s why.
Because Jakita Wagner meets Batman (finally!) and she says (not word for word, but kind of paraphrase-y): “Sometimes beating a man dressed in a bat fetish costume is the only thing keeping me sane.”
God bless you, Jakita Wagner, the world would be a better place if more people would just admit that.
Also, because it’s a multiverse tale, you get to enjoy not just one, not just two, but several (shut up, math is hard) Batmans! Batmen? From the classic Bob Kane vision to Adam West as Batman to Frank Miller to a whole bunch of Batmen (Batmans?) I don’t even recognize, you’ve got a Batman for every discerning taste.
Also, Elijah Snow is there, and Elijah Snow makes everything awesome.
So, you should read Planetary/Batman: Night on Earth.
Especially if you’re everyone.
Lately, I’ve been neglecting to fill this blog with photographs of Cillian Murphy. I shall now remedy the situation by having his character in Batman Begins and The Dark Knight face off against a scarecrow of a different color: The scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz.
As far as background, both characters go by “Scarecrow,” but only one is played by Cillian Murphy. For convenience sake, let’s call The Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz Scarecrow (W) and The Scarecrow from Batman Scarecrow (B).
Let’s get to battlin’.
Physicality. Scarecrow (W) is a scarecrow. Scarecrow (B) was played by Cillian Murphy in the movies that I thought got kind of boring, but everybody else really seemed to like a lot. Winner? Cillian Murphy.
Is evil? If there’s one thing the folks in the DC Universe are good at, it’s giving Batman some awfully wicked foes to fight. (I didn’t say they’re always good at it.) Scarecrow (B) is one of those foes, who likes to spray his victims with some kind of fear gas that I would know more about if Two-Face wasn’t my favorite Batman villain. Scarecrow (W) Seems like a nice enough guy. Then again, he is a scarecrow. But not a scarecrow with fear gas. Winner? Scarecrow (B).
Lives in a magical land filled with wonder? Scarecrow (B) lives in Gotham City, which I think is the penal colony version of New York City. So it’s filled with something, all right. Just not wonder. Scarecrow (W) lives in Oz, where nobody ever dies (except when L. Frank Baum forgets that rule and someone dies) and no one grows old (see last paranthesis) and there is magic and wonder all over the place. Winner? Scarecrow (W).
Faces a greater adversary? I’ve been using the word “foe” a lot, eh? Adversary it is. Scarecrow (W) has to face off against a powerful evil witch. That seems like it would be troublesome, but it turns out she’s like those stupid aliens in that stupid movie and stupid stupid M. Night Shyamalan. Anyway, she’s totally defeated when someone splashes water on her, which, gosh, is even easier than sucker punching somebody.
Scarecrow (B) has to fight Batman. Well, he doesn’t have to, but he’s crazy and a villain, so he does. And we all know there’s no tougher opponent than Batman. Winner? Scarecrow (B).
Has brains? Scarecrow (B) has brains. Scarecrow (W) gets bilked out of his rightful brains by a phony wizard, who doesn’t even open the head of one of the witch’s flying monkeys and scoop a bowl out for the poor bastard. Winner? Scarecrow (B).
Has better friends? Scarecrow (W) befriends a little girl named Dorothy, a cowardly lion named The Cowardly Lion and the tin man named the Tin Man. Oz was a very literal place.
Anyway, they all go on adventures, murder a witch and become the bestest of friends. Scarecrow (B) is a sociopath. Some sociopaths have friends, maybe, but they’re probably thinking that any moment they’re going to get stabbed in the eye, so I’ll bet they’re not the kind of friends who help someone move. Winner? Scarecrow (W).
Ends up ruling a kingdom? Scarecrow (B), like so many of Batman’s enemies, ends up in Arkham Asylum a lot. Which isn’t so much a kingdom as a mental instution that is also haunted. Also, he doesn’t really rule it so much as rot in a cell. On the other hand, Scarecrow (W) ends up ruling, I don’t know, the Winkies or some damn body. Winner? Scarecrow (W).
Didn’t get ruined by the live-action movies, like my favorite villain, Two-Face, did? Hey, you can’t go wrong when you cast Cillian Murphy as anybody. He’s brilliant. Ummmm, and Scarecrow (W) wasn’t ruined by the movie either, but I’m still going with: Winner? Scarecrow (B).
Overall winner? Gotham City’s terror at night: Jonathan Crane.
One thing that everyone knows about clowns is that they are the minions of the devil. Sure, you might laugh at them when you see them, but deep down, you know you’re laughing at the devil.
Speaking of clowns, Krusty is a clown and the Joker kind of looks like a clown.
(I’m just assuming you know who these guys are, because, Christ!, my granny knows who these guys are.)
Anyway, they’re both tools of Satan, but which one do we like better?
Let’s find out.
Physicality. Both these guys have the traditional clown makeup going for them, except in the Joker’s case he’s also horribly disfigured. Normally, in a battle of clowns, everybody loses, but being horribly disfigured is an extra strike against you. Winner? Krusty.
Shows a marked lack of morals? The Joker is always doing stuff like murdering people in really horrible ways and plotting to murder people in really horrible ways, and probably killing their pets too, because he is really, really evil. Krusty, however, is a compulsive gambler, faked his own death, then faked his alter ego’s death, and sells such dangerous toys to the little childrens. Winner? Man, these guys both have the moral sensibilities of a dead squid. It’s a tie.
Better sidekick? The Joker has his legion of henchmen willing to play to his every evil whim, which seems kind of stupid of them, because he’s always killing his henchmen, but maybe they’re all somewhat suicidal or something? Krusty the Clown has had two sidekicks (that I know of, since I quit watching The Simpsons years ago): Sideshow Bob and Sideshow Mel. Heh. Those guys are awesome. Winner? Krusty.
More effective nemesis? The Joker’s nemesis is Batman, or The Goddamned Batman, as he is known in some circles. The Goddamned Batman is a master detective, proficient in, like, 872 forms of martial arts and 457 ways to kill you (he won’t use them, though, because he’s, deep down, a nice guy). Krusty the Clown’s most faithful adversary is Sideshow Bob, who keeps getting arrested and can’t even kill a 10-year-old boy. Winner? The Joker.
Better origin? The Joker’s origins are either that he fell into a vat of acid and was permanently disfigured and went insane, or maybe that his daddy cut the sides of his face up, or maybe that he is “super-sane,” because Grant Morrison likes to be contrary, but the point of the Joker is that he has no fixed origin and could be anybody, really. Krusty the Clown was born as Herschel Shmoikel Pinchas Yerucham Krustofski, the son of a rabbi, and worked his way up to become a somewhat successful comedian. Who dresses like a clown. Winner? Hey, Krusty’s father was a rabbi. What makes a better origin story than having a rabbi in it? Krusty for the win.
More likely to kill you stone dead? Are we talking on purpose or through sheer negligence? Because, really, you’re better off just avoiding these two like the plague. The Joker will murder you straight to hell and Krusty will either pratfall you to death or give you a lead- and arsenic-based toy to play with. Winner? A tie.
Overall winner? Krusty the Clown, because Two-Face is my favorite Batman villain. He’s so tortured!
Sometimes it’s hard to come up with fictional characters to face off. Other times, your coworkers say: “How about Poison Ivy vs. that plant from Little Shop of Horrors?” while a choir of angels sing and heavenly light shines upon them.
For background, Poison Ivy is actually a person and not, as her name would suggest, a plant. Audrey 2 is actually a plant and not, as her name would suggest, a person. Although people don’t usually have sequels, so if she was a person, she’d probably be Audrey Jr., because some people actually do that, you know.
Also, Poison Ivy is a villain in the Batman universe and Audrey 2 is an evil space alien plant thing come to kill us all.
Let the battle … commence!
Physicality. Let’s face it. This category’s a gimme for Poison Ivy because unless there is something severely wrong with you (both psychologically and physically), there is nothing attractive about man-eating plants, alien species or no. Also, most people draw Poison Ivy hot, so she’s got that going for her. Winner? Poison Ivy.
More likely to date Batman? I’d like to give this category to Audrey 2, just because it would be funnier, but she’s kind of stuck in a pot in a plant shop and he lives in Gotham City, so it’s not like their paths are going to cross or anything. And besides, Poison Ivy’s got that mind control powder or whatever, so I think she actually has, on occasion, dated Batman. Winner? Poison Ivy.
Wants to kill all humans? Like Bender and the Cylon Centurion before them, there’s nothing these ladies (?) (Is it really OK to call a man-eating plant a lady, even if it is named Audrey 2?) hate more than humans. Except for dinner, in Audrey 2′s case, am I right, ha, ha, ha? (Sometimes I have to write out the laughter when I’m not sure people will understand that something was supposed to be funny, and then I realize I’ve failed at my job as a humor writer.) Except ol’ Poison Ivy is still at least part human and has some human feelings and even fondness for other humans, as shown in that one issue of Gotham Central (Homicide: Life on the Streets — now with more Batman!) where she kills a corrupt cop for killing a runaway she was caring for. Winner? Audrey 2.
More likely to burst into song? Audrey 2 sometimes lives in a musical. Other times, she lives in a depressing black and white movie starring Jack Nicholson that has no singing whatsoever. But mostly a musical. Poison Ivy never lives in a musical, unless someone is planning on bastardizing Batman the way Bono and his evil Broadway buddies have done to Spiderman. (On the other hand, though, I’ve never liked Spiderman, so I kind of feel like he deserves it.) Winner? Audrey 2.
Has the gift of mobility? One of Audrey 2′s great flaws is that she (it? She-it?) is a plant and, thus, immobile.
Poison Ivy, however, still being mostly human, can walk around on her human legs and even run if she wants to, and sometimes fly an invisible jet. Or perhaps that’s Wonder Woman. Winner? Poison Ivy.
Has a more fearsome nemesis? Audrey 2′s nemesis is Seymour, the plant owner who helped raise her from a little … plantling? or something. In a 1986 movie, he’s portrayed by Rick Moranis, who is anything but threatening. Poison Ivy is a villain in the Batman universe, which means her nemesis is Batman, unless it’s The Huntress or Nightwing or somebody, if the writer feels like it. But the truth of the matter is, even Barbara Gordon could take Seymour in a fight. Winner? Poison Ivy.
Hangs out with a better class of villain? Audrey 2 seems to be the only one of her kind here on earth, unless there were a bunch of other ones that showed up at the same time she did, but nobody gave them any blood and so they all died. Alien invasion foiled! Poison Ivy sometimes pals around with Harley Quinn and the Joker and Catwoman and all them nefarious Gotham City sorts. Winner? Poison Ivy.
I feel bad for Audrey 2. Comes from space? Audrey 2 comes from space. Winner? Audrey 2.
Overall winner? Poison Ivy, because I really hate singing plants.
Alfred Pennyworth is a butler.
Waylon Smithers is a butler.
So what we have here, folks, is a battle of butlers. A butler battle, if you will.
Butlers butt heads! we could say, but we won’t , because why pick the low-hanging fruit?
In a battle of buttling, which of these two gents will reign triumphant? Will it be Batman’s butler? Will it be Burns’ butler? Will it be alliteration, which is just having a field day here?
Let’s find out!
Physicality. Smithers is a character in The Simpsons universe, and thus has four fingers and bug eyes. Alfred has the appearance of a distinguished butler, usually with a thin moustache, and has been portrayed in recent filmes by Michael Caine. Michael Caine is so awesome. Winner? Michael Caine. And, by default, Alfred.
Has a more butler-y name? Don’t you love how adding -y to a noun totally makes it an adjective, absolutely breaking no rules of grammar at all? (What do you mean it doesn’t? Shut up! You’re wrong! Wrong!) Alfred Pennyworth’s name is Alfred Pennyworth, which makes him sound like the proper-est British butler that ever lived, coming from a family of butlers who were named things like Jeeves Pennyworth and Butler Pennyworth. Waylon Smithers’ name is Waylon Smithers, and I think the only reason I think of Smithers as a butler’s name is because of him. Winner? Alfred Pennyworth.
Has a better boss? Alfred’s boss is Batman who, by day, is disguised as Bruce Wayne, ladykilling playboy extraordinaire. At night, he fights crime and often comes home with internal injuries and stuff, which Alfred has to treat. That seems like a lot of work above and beyond your traditional description of “butler.” Smithers’ boss is Mr. Burns who, by day, is disguised as Mr. Burns. Whatever, he’s totally evil, and has even tried taking candy from a baby! It’s got to be hard working for someone that evil, don’t you think? Winner? Nobody. They both have terrible, terrible bosses.
Isn’t actually a butler at all? Smithers is actually an executive assistant to Mr. Burns, but I think butler sounds better. (Alliteration for the win!) Winner? Smithers.
Has a big fat man-crush on his boss? Why, yes, I’m sure they do.
Suffers from a deathly allergy? Waylon Smithers is deathly allergic to bee stings. Alfred is deathly allergic to, I don’t know, the Joker’s poison gas or something. But everyone is, so that hardly counts. Winner? Smithers.
Fights a greater evil? Alongside Batman, Alfred fights the supervillains that populate Gotham City. And by “alongside Batman,” I actually mean “from the relative safety of the Batcave.” Still, that’s more than you and I do. There’s a lot of supervillains in Gotham City, which is totally a magnet for crazy. Or Batman is a magnet for crazy. Whichever. Either way? Lots and lots of evil. Smithers, at Mr. Burns’ side, actually perpetuates a lot of acts of evil himself. On the other hand, he has to deal with Homer Simpson on a daily basis. Winner? It’s a tie.
Speaking of ties, let’s go to the tie-breaker, shall we? Yes, let’s do.
Has better toys to play with when the boss isn’t around? Now, as we all know, Mr. Burns has loads and loads of money. He even once made a thing that blocked out the sun. (Why, yes, as a matter of fact, I can’t remember the proper term for that thing, why do you ask?) So we know that Smithers would have access to all sorts of toys when the boss isn’t around. Except we also know this: the boss never isn’t around. Where Smithers is, Burns is. Also vice versa. Then we have Alfred. And Batman. And the Batmobile. And the Bat-shark repellant. And the Batarangs. And the Batman brand condoms or whatever. Winner? Alfred, because holy bat-toys, Batman!
Overall winner? Alfred Pennyworth, but only just.
You are my perfect (bat) man.
1) a superhero
2) fabulously, fabulously wealthy.
Either one of these things is enough to get my attention, but the combination of the two, well! And with a masked vigilante’s lifespan being what it is, marrying you is like pulling an Anna Nicole Smith without having to marry some crusty old guy before he kicks off.
Errrr, not, Batman, that I want to marry you for your wealth alone. You have many other redeeming qualities, such as having trained with ninja! (Having trained with ninja is a thing that can be defined as a “quality,” right?)
There’s also your good looks and your gadgets. (OK, I’m pretty sure you can call gadgets a “quality.”) And I mustn’t forget your keen detective’s mind, which is a big turn-on for most ladies, I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that.
(I mean, do you have any idea how many fictional women were throwing their panties at Sherlock Holmes?)
Also, and most importantly, you are the goddamned Batman.
I love you.