After the solid trailer from Captain America: Civil War came out of the left field last week, it was clear that DC would be highly unlikely to not put something out this week, to get the discussion back in its court. Today, surprisingly also on Jimmy Kimmel’ show, the new trailer for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice has dropped like a meteorite into the masses of fans everywhere. Did it make an impact and answer a lot of questions way too many fan theories have been built around? Yes. Is it good? Well, see for yourself.
First off, the positives. The tone of the trailer is thrilling and inspiring at the same time. Once we actually get to hear the alter-egos of the eponymous heroes exchange words, the general atmosphere of the film feels a bit lighter than the absolutely serious and gritty one-note of Man of Steel. The banter between the characters on and off the field capture the smirking Bruce Wayne and the deviously comical Lex Luthor. Ben Affleck feels right in the role of Bruce Wayne and and has got the quips in his utility belt. Juxtaposed with Clark Kent’s stoic voice, this new tone shows a promising and working duo in the future. And while I still doubt Jesse Eisenberg’s acting choices for the role, his presence in this new trailer gives more hope than the last one ever did.
Now that’s done, let me move on to why I think this was the most unnecessary trailer for DC to have released. The film’s set for release four months from now, and this trailer basically opens up a chart and takes us through the plot of the film. Starting from the meeting between Bruce, Clark and Lex at the ball to the final fight between the Big Three (Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman) and Doomsday, the trailer tells all. I could only hope that the trailer had stopped right before the CGI-explosion popped onto the screen, before it went on to give away what would have been brilliant surprises for the actual film. Well, brilliant on surprise meters, but not necessarily on appeal. Considering how most of the big action scenes look like an explosion of CGI, what was most underwhelming was the appearance of the main villain (as is stands now revealed, unfortunately) Doomsday. There is not a spark of imagination in his creation, somewhat resembling Abomination from The Incredible Hulk. And so it was that what all those fan theories speculated was true, albeit to a disappointing reveal. If the secret had been saved for the movie, I could imagine more of an impact with Doomsday’s reveal, but now that I’ve seen what it’s like, it’s not something I’m looking forward to. The duo is joined by the Amazonian princess, and from the looks of it, saving the Dark Knight in the process. With her invulnerable all-awesome shield, she stands between the two who quip about whose side she is on. I liked these parts, but I would have loved it all the more had it been saved for the movie. This reminds of when Marvel released its last trailer for Avengers back in 2012 and showed the Hulk saving Tony from a fatal fall. I understand that the producers want to generate as much discussion and interest as possible to get people in the seats, but I hope they realize that it is only at the cost of the excitement and satisfaction of seeing it on screen for the first time.
Although I praised the Bruce-Clark dialogue, there were many lines that made me cringe during the trailer, and once again, all from Lex Luthor. Lex is like a wrestling commentator spouting more hype-building lines than any movie could ever want for its posters. I mean, it was alright with just ‘Black and blue, god versus man, day versus night’ and it feels totally unnecessary to have the awkward ‘Son of Krypton versus Bat of Gotham’, something you usually only read on the cover pages of comics in the 80s. These are lines that seem perfectly fine to read on paper with the campiness of the 80s, but here it just feels misplaced and cringe-inducing. In fact, I think Lex Luthor’s superpower in this alteration might be just making Superman cringe with every word he speaks and to then attack him.
The new trailer was preceded by a sneak peak which showed a scowling Superman unmask Batman in the post-apocalyptic suit of his as seen from previous trailers. I am pretty much sold on the fact that that was a nightmare sequence, possibly Batman’s fear of what Superman really will become. Those are the scenes in this trailer too that I loved, because they look real and the action amidst the dust seems visceral. And all that I said aside, that final shot of DC’s Big Three stepping up against Doomsday looks pretty awesome, I should say.
Although something I wish had not happened, the extended look deep into the plot of Batman v Superman did give us a much better idea of what the film is going to be like. To their credit, they seem to have gotten the chemistry between the Dark Knight and the Man of Steel spot on, all the way through the rumble and out as allies later on. It’s good to know that the fight doesn’t see itself through, and someone might see sense to join forces, as the bigger fight is yet to come. Though I like the idea of the plot, if Doomsday looks the same in the actual movie, I have to say I’m going to be disappointed, seeing the way he is now. I just hope DC does not now come out with anything more to reveal about the film, to save what little surprises there are left for the theaters.