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Fans v Critics: Dawn of the DC Universe

By Calvin Shepherd
On April 1, 2016

MILD SPOILERS -- “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice” hit theaters last weekend, pulling both positive and negative reviews, mostly the latter. I, being a massive Batman fan, loved the movie. Of course, there were a few things that bothered me: Batman having no regard for human life for example, but I was able to let them rest in order to enjoy the spectacle that is Batman and Superman on the big screen together.

However, reviews coming back from this movie are negative because of what the movie is -- and that is not Marvel. These complaints target the film’s serious stance and lack of humor. One critic went as far as quoting Heath Ledger's Joker saying, “Why so serious.” By the way, a Christopher Nolan Batman film probably is the best route to take when complaining about the seriousness of a movie. But my answer to those reviews is: Who cares?

Last night, at the moment the clock rang in April Fools, I was pranked by the Internet. A news report surfaced saying Zack Snyder had stepped down from the DC Cinematic Universe and that Max Landis would step in. I was fooled because this seems like a real possibility. DC and Warner Brothers may run and hide from the reviews causing them to take drastic measures in order to win back the critcs.

Look, not every superhero movie can be happy, bright and joke-filled romps. If we keep pushing for more humor in Batman, he’ll end up running around on the screen with a character created for comic relief like Jar Jar Binks or even dancing like Adam West.

We don't need humor! The funniest part of “The Dark Knight” was when the Joker was parading around in a nurse costume. The humor really goes away from that scene when you consider that he most likely killed the nurse who owns that uniform. 

“Batman v Superman” does the same type of humor. Believable humor. Not humor that's forced in order make the audience laugh, but real humor that everyday people would say. 

The fact of the matter is, if Batman and Superman are cracking jokes and smiling like Iron Man and Ant Man do, then next thing you know the critics would be tearing the movie apart for not being dark and brooding. It had no chance!

This movie was announced when I was a junior in high school. Now, I am only a month away from being a junior in college. The long wait for this movie gave the false perception that it would be absolutely perfect. Just a few mistakes and suddenly it only has a 29-percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes next to a petition for the director’s job.

After the release, “Aquaman” director James Wan announced he was going to make a more fun movie that steers away from the Zack Snyder approach. Other reports say that “Justice League” will also be a bright movie -- along with reports that dropped yesterday that “Suicide Squad” is going back for reshoots to add more humor.

Simply put: Stop. The DC movies can have a different tone than the Marvel ones. Two companies can’t produce the same thing. Give us funny Marvel movies and give us serious DC movies. I am not going to watch comedies.

This is not me "fanboying." I'm not forcing myself to like this movie simply because it has Batman in it, but rather because I loved it. I loved the darkness, and I love the feeling I had while watching it. I was on the edge my seat and so invested that my hands flew up to my mouth at one point as my jaw dropped. It felt like I was there and couldn't believe what was happening.

As a fan, I completely stand by this movie, and I think that is more important than anything. These movies are not for the critics. These movies are for the people who can pull out a picture of them in a Batman shirt from every year of their lives. It sickens me to think they may turn this world on its head and make it over the top in order to impress people who just don’t understand it.

Keep this DC Cinematic Universe dark. It’s where it belongs. 

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