The Dark Knight Returns

There is no doubting that Frank Miller‘s The Dark Knight Returns – which focused on an older military-esque, hard-as-nails Batman set against the zeitgeist of contemporary society at the time – is one of the most seminal comic books (along with Alan Moore‘s Watchmen) of the 1980s. The Graphic novel inspired Tim Burton‘s vision of his 1989 movie adaptation Batman, and also inspired the darker moody tone of Christopher Nolan‘s Batman trilogy – particularly The Dark Knight Rises, furthermore, looking set to be a major influence on Zack Snyder‘s upcoming tent-pole (the movie that is setting up the Justice League), Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice.

The book was a major seller upon release and it still remains so to this day; prompting DC to hire Frank Miller to rewrite Batman’s origin story to add an element of continuity in Batman: Year One – which is essentially a prequel to The Dark Knight Rises (this coming from Frank Miller himself). Almost two decades later, Miller followed up with a Dark Knight Returns sequel – The Dark Knight Strikes Again – and the All-Star Batman and Robin, which acted as a prequel to the latter. They were released to poor reviews from fans and critics alike, and sales were disappointing.

Batman: Year One

Miller considers Batman: Year One to be a prequel to DKR

But now that the comic book world is more popular than ever at the moment (with Marvel ruling on the big-screen, and DC taking over on the small screen), it doesn’t come as a surprise that DC and Frank Miller are reportedly returning to the Dark Knight Returns canon once again. Rich Johnston from BleedingCool has stated that The Dark Knight Returns 3 – which won’t wind up being the final title – will be a joint venture from both Miller and current Batman writer Scott Snyder (Snyder has currently been saving Batman in the New 52 series, having a very popular run with the Caped Crusader including such story arcs as, Court of the Owls and Year Zero ).

Here is the kicker, apparently Miller isn’t well enough to take on drawing duties, so this has led to DC consider various other artists to tackle drawing duties. Names that have been mentioned have been: Greg Capullo (Snyder’s co-creator on Batman), Jim Lee (Justice League), Andy Kubert (Flashpoint), Marc Silvestri (Witchblade) and Sean Murphy (American Vampire). Miller’s artwork in The Dark Knight Returns was superb, but the quality became somewhat overtly cartoonish in The Dark Knight Strikes Again.

Carrie Kelly

Snyder and Miller want to concentrate on Carrie Kelly’s Character.

The plot seems rather contentious, and will no doubt split fans down the middle… here it is courtesy of Johnston:

“The story, I am told, would concern Carrie Kelley, the Robin of ‘Dark Knight [Returns]‘, now in her elder years. She is now in a similar position to that of Bruce Wayne in the original ‘Dark Knight [Returns]‘, and she is seeking her own successor to protect Gotham.”

It might just be the pessimist in me… but doesn’t this seems like a rather devious plan to tie this all into a future movie, I remain dubious, as Carrie Kelley was merely a plot device in the previous installments, and she was not a fully developed character. So, now that Batman is gone, Carrie will now be seeking her own successor to protect Gotham… really???

To further back my claim, Carrie Kelly will be included in Zack Snyders’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. The part will be played by Jena Malone – who – after signing up for the part, spotted soon after sporting a short haircut and which was dyed bright red, just like Kelley in the comics. I remain rather sceptical as there isn’t really a need to delve further into Kelly’s character, and it seems more like a set-up to synergize the comic book character with the DC film Universe.

Do we really want to see a sequel to The Dark Knight Returns and The Dark Knight Strikes Again that doesn’t feature Batman? Looks like the interwebs is gonna be rumbling with discontentment folks…

They could focus on an even older Batman? (…obviously not Zimmerframe old). That could work, no? Drop us a line or two to let us know your thoughts peeps.

Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – which is probably the closest adaptation of the Dark Knight Returns we will see on the big screen – will be released on March 25th, 2016.

Via – ScreenRant

Category: Comics, Film

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