Vodcast: The Quality and Theology of Batman v Superman

Batman v Superman: Bad Movie, Theology, or Both?

How good, or how bad, is Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, really?

No one can seem to agree on whether its actually a good or bad movie. (Which is rather fitting, given the subject matter of the film itself.) The vast majority of reviews from film critics blasted the flick to shreds, yet the staggering weight of  its $268 million(and counting) take at the (U.S.) box office seems to strongly indicate that fans are singing a different tune.

The difference in response between critics and “casual fans” has been so polar opposite, in fact, that a number of fans (already being semi-affectionately labeled as Batman v Superman Review Truthers”) even began to question whether or not all the nay-saying critics had been paid off by Disney/Marvel.

We have some opinions on the matter, as well as on a topic that far fewer people are talking about… yet: what’s the deal with the spiritual themes in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice?

Oh, and in case you’d rather listen to this discussion in the car or in the gym or on the run from Russian secret agents, we’ve got a special audio link just for you, right below the video.

Who wrote this?

Jake Roberson is Plugged In’s social media manager and strategist. He’s the father of four children and husband of one wife, and he quite likes life that way. He also likes writing about entertainment, pop culture, dadhood … and food. He’s also a former Guinness World Record holder for participating in the largest hacky sack circle. Catch up with him on Twitter @jake_roberson

Have something to say? Leave a comment.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago

Posted by First Comment Guy

I'm a late comer to this post (I know, ironic for my title), but I personally loved Dawn of Justice! (pause for people to stop reading)

Paul, according to your complaints on Batman, he's a guy who has been fighting crime for 20 years. To quote Harvey Dent from 'The Dark Knight', "You either die the hero or you live long enough to become the villain". This is what has happened to Batman. During his fight with Superman, Batman remembers why he became a superhero. Did you not get the impression that Batman wouldn't kill anymore when the movie ended? I did.

Superman can't smile because he's depressed. Pretty much nobody likes him and doesn't want his help. If I were in Superman's shoes (or boots), I wouldn't feel like smiling all the time.

I will say that I agree with you on Lois and Clark living together. It didn't need to be apart of the movie (even though Superman sleeping with his girlfriend is nothing new to Hollywood).

I feel like Batman v Superman is one of those movies you need to see yourself and make up your own opinion. That being said, you're probably safer just renting it than potentially wasting $12.

Christina Lashley More than 1 year ago
To me the definitive Batman is Adam West. He really gave the character a place in the public eye, and I just love the humor in the show and how it is something wholesome that people of all ages can enjoy.
Alex Clark More than 1 year ago
Michael Keaton will forever be the definitive Batman!!  Forget Bale and his cheesy gravely voice ^^.

Max Kuntz More than 1 year ago
First of all , I just want to say that this is , in my opinion , the best and funniest vodcast you guys have ever done .  Before BvS came out in theaters I kinda had mixed feelings about it . I loved the dark knight trilogy and I knew that no batman could come close to Christian Bale but I still had hope that this movie would still be good , even though Man of Steel was my least favorite superhero movie I've ever seen . And after I saw the trailers for the movie I thought it looked pretty good . I now know that I will most likely not watch this movie thanks to plugged in . Even though you guys gave it two and a half stars like the dark night and the dark night rises I don't think this seems like such a good movie as those ones . This movie just seems so dark and I'm disappointed that they would have Clark and Lois living together and also disappointed about batman killing people and using guns. In my opinion DC comics is just going to keep going down hill especially with there next movie , suicide squad .  I thank you guys at plugged in for doing these reviews so i know if a movie is ok for me and my family to watch . 
jake_roberson More than 1 year ago
Hey thanks, Max! Appreciate that. :-)

Also, while I can see why you and Paul gravitate to Bale when thinking of the best movie version of Bats, I still contend that Will Arnett is right up there with him in terms of sheer awesome sauciness. (Yeah, "awesome sauciness" is totally a thing now.)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

For me, Bale IS batman. But I agree with you: Arnett is awesome.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago

While Bale, Affleck and Arnett are all amazing as Batman, lets be honest with ourselves; Kevin Conroy is THE Batman!

For those who don't know him, he's the guy who voices Batman in The Animated Series and The Justice League cartoons. He also voices him in the Arkham videogames. Whenever I read a Batman comic, it's always Conroy's voice that's in my head.

But I can see why Jake loves Arnett as Batman. The LEGO Movie is my third favorite movie of all time, and I can't wait for The LEGO Batman Movie! How bout you, Jake? Are you as excited as I am? :)

jake_roberson More than 1 year ago
Conroy's voice is pretty great. I'm with you there.

And, in regards to my level of interest in the potential of The LEGO Batman Movie...


Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It sure does!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

Agreed. Bring on the Lego Batman Movie!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Posted by Smith.

Ha! I forgot about Conroy. Yes, a great job. I guess that makes three, then.
Joshua Kroeger More than 1 year ago
Saw this movie recently, and share the same feelings with you both!  Two-dimensional characters, convoluted, overlong story, and surprisingly bad portrayals of Batman and Superman!  Also, while some of the film's Messianic overtones were good, others were not so good.  Not a good movie experience overall.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Batman and Superman were badly portrayed? For those who think that, you may just change your mind after you read:

"The 8 biggest times Hollywood has ruined a comic character"

8. Human Torch (Fant4stic)
The Human Torch was NEVER black! So it makes ZERO sense getting a black guy just to be politically correct!

7. The Ninja Turtles (2014)
Ok, so after getting rescued by April when they were babies, she dumps them down the sewer! Then, Splinter Becomes a ninja and teaches his turtles by using a book that was flushed down a TOILET! WHAT?!

6. Batman (Batman & Robin)
Batman with a credit card? No. Just no.

5. Invisible Woman (2005)
Why is a 20 something actress playing a person whose supposed to be in her 30s?! Can anyone answer that?

4. Batgirl (Batman & Robin)
With a fake British accent, no, I mean HORRIBLE accent, and the fact that she's supposed to be related to Jim Gordon, it's no surprise that this movie killed Alicia Silverstone's career.

3. Ghostrider (2007)
Like Invisible Woman, they got someone the wrong age to play this character. Never mind the fact that the guy playing him was Nicholas Cage.

2. Deadpool (X-Men Origins: Wolverine)
Deadpool's supposed to have a foul potty mouth, so why does he not only NOT have a mouth, but is shirtless, tattooed, and has blades sticking out of his hands?! Whatever the reason, it makes no sense compared to the comics, AT ALL!

1. Catwoman (2004)
Her name is Selina, people. Not Patience!  
And the fact that they ignored her backstory entirely is as stupid as her revealing outfit.

Compare any of these poor-trayals to Batman and/or Superman from Dawn of Justice, and their performances look Oscar worthy. If I forgot to add anyone, please reply.
bobed More than 1 year ago
LOL, I hope you're joking...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Joking about what?
bobed More than 1 year ago
Uh, everything you said? Comes off as silly irony, to be honest. Like a caricature of something a fanboy would say. 
bobed More than 1 year ago
"Why is a 20 something actress playing a person whose supposed to be in her 30s?! Can anyone answer that?" 

You can't deny this complaint is hilarious. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Think about; an actress in her 20s playing a character whose in her 30s isn't accurate to the comics. Therefore making the fans upset.

I'd LOVE to hear you justify the Deadpool from Origins.
jake_roberson More than 1 year ago
Thanks for your thoughts, Joshua! (Though I do want to clarify, for the record, that I didn't think it was a bad portrayal of Batman by Affleck. My contention is that the script short-changed what could have been a very interesting version of Bats.) =D