RANKING EVERY LIVE ACTION BATMAN ACTOR
Article written by Dylan Devine (2/27/21)
The caped crusader is one of the most iconic super heroes of all time. There have been many different portrayals of Batman over the years in video games, TV series, and movies. Today I will be ranking all of the live action big screen Batman actors.
Christian Bale (Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises)
Coming in at number one is Christian Bale. Bale is the Batman I grew up with. He is arguably the most iconic and known Batman. Bale’s portrayal of Batman and Bruce Wayne was portrayed perfectly. When he puts on the mask he transforms into what Batman really is supposed to be. A terrifying figure in the shadows who kicks ass. This version of Batman in film is a character alongside someone like Iron Man who defined comic book characters in film.
2. Ben Affleck (Batman V Superman Dawn of Justice, Justice League, Justice League Snyder Cut)
This may be a hot take taking Affleck over Michael Keaton, but I really have enjoyed Affleck’s portrayal of Batman thus far. I think he has been a victim of being in some bad movies with terrible writing to go with it, but he has played the role very well. Affleck’s Batman is an older somewhat broken down version of the character that we have never seen before. The physique Affleck has as Batman perfectly fits the character. He is 6’4 and jacked. This is a Batman you don’t want to mess with. You’ve got all of the differently personalities of Batman being portrayed perfectly. The public Bruce Wayne, the Bruce Wayne with Alfred, and the Batman. My one flaw with Affleck’s Batman is that he’s sort of dumb. He isn’t the detective that Batman is. But with the upcoming release of Zack Snyder’s Justice League on HBO Max, I think we’ll be getting an even better version of Affleck’s Batman. IMO if this movie goes over well, he has potential to move up to my number one spot.
3. Michael Keaton (Batman, Batman Returns)
Keaton had a dead serious take as Batman. He fit the role perfectly for what Tim Burton wanted it to be. He was a great and believable Batman. Some negatives though. His physique did not match Batman’s phsyique. Keaton is 5’9 and relatively skinny. Batman is not. He is not a great Bruce Wayne, he’s more like a loner version of Wayne. Now this fits in the movie that Burton put out, but it does not match the TRUE Batman character. Although there are some flaws with Keaton’s Batman, he in my opinion is the second most iconic Batman behind Christian Bale.
4. Adam West (Batman : The Movie)
The first ever live action version of Batman. West delivered perfectly as the Batman during the time he played the caped crusader. It is very much a 60’s version of Batman. More directed to a younger audience. West’s portrayal as Batman is definitely iconic in it’s own unique way. RIP to the OG Bat.
5. Val Kilmer (Batman Forever)
Eh. That’s how I feel about Kilmer’s Batman portrayal. I think he definitely had potential, but was given a bad movie with bad and corny writing. He’s not necessarily a bad Batman, he’s just not good. He just doesn’t feel like Batman.
6. George Clooney (Batman & Robin)
Coming in at last place is George Clooney. Simply just a weird interpretation of Batman that didn’t make any sense. The only positive of Clooney’s portrayal of Batman is that it showed everything you SHOULD NOT do with Batman. Clooney is a good actor, don’t get me wrong. But he was just an awkward and corny Bruce Wayne, and did not fit the role of Batman at all. Don’t even get me started on the bat nipples.