If Batman Is Blackwashed, Will He Even Want To Fight For Gotham City?
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Anyone who’s followed The Great Replacement in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which became openly antiwhite in the last Spiderman film when the webslinger apologized for being white, won’t be surprised to learn that Hollywood is also blackwashing Batman. MCU’s Captain America famously transmogrified from alabaster-white Steve Rogers to black-as-the-Ace-of-Spades Sam Wilson, so of course the Titans of Tinseltown also had to do something about the Caped Crusader…or at least about those around him (for now). Two main characters in the just-released latest incarnation, The Batman, are non-white. The Great Replacement has come to Gotham. The question: Why would Batman, the scion of one of its oldest, most prominent white families, still fight for it?

A little background on the cinematic history of the man behind the cowl. Not counting two serial films in 1943 and 1949, or the 1966 highly-amusing film based on the television series that delighted Boomer kids everywhere, filmmakers have produced a recent series of 10 motion pictures going back to 1989. In other words, the vigilante Bob Kane and Bill Finger created for Detective Comics No. 27 in 1939—THE Batman—has been a rich vein of ore.

This time, Robert Pattinson takes over as director Matt Reeves’ (Cloverfield, Planet of the Apes) Dark Knight. Pattinson’s predecessors as Batman were Michael Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, Christian Bale and Ben Affleck.

One might think it’s too soon to reboot Batman. Affleck’s take on the Caped Crusader, Batman v Superman, appeared in 2016, just four years after the conclusion of director Christopher Nolan’s epic trilogy featuring Bale (2005’s Batman Begins, 2008 The Dark Knight and 2012 The Dark Knight Rises). Strangely, we will still see Affleck’s version of Batman in The Flash, to be released later this year. Keaton will also reprise his Batman role from Tim Burton’s two offerings in The Flash.

It sounds odd, but recall that three white actors played Spiderman in No Way Home, the film in which Spiderman denounced himself for being white.

Fans of the franchise have been clamoring for Keaton’s return since he quit the role before the filming of Batman Forever in 1995.

What makes for the enduring popularity of Batman? I would say because he's the most right-wing of all comic book characters, a point Greg Johnson and Gregory Hood persuasively argued in their fantastic 2018 book Dark Right: Batman Viewed from the Right.

In the introduction, the authors explain the necessity for a scholarly work looking at the Caped Crusader through the prism of right-wing thought:

The entire superhero genre is inherently anti-liberal, for even though superheroes generally fight for liberal humanist values, they do so outside the law. They are vigilantes. But vigilantism only becomes necessary when the liberal legal order fails to secure justice. This implies that, ultimately, we are not governed by laws, but by men.

Batman is not a superhero with superpower. He’s not an alien like Superman, who is super because Earth’s gravitational pull is less than that of home-planet Krypton. Neither did a radioactive bat bite him, as a radioactive spider bit Peter Parker a.k.a. Spiderman. Instead, Batman is the alter ego of Bruce Wayne, a massively wealthy philanthropist who witnessed the murder of his parents. He vowed vengeance, and ever after to keep Gotham safe from rapists, murderers, and organized crime.

In this latest movie, The Batman, our eponymous vigilante has been active for two years. As he laments throughout the movie in clever monologues (in journal entries called “The Gotham Experiment,” reminiscent of the Rorschach character in 2009’s The Watchmen), violent crime and murder have risen since he began his crusade. We get almost no backstory on Wayne’s training to become the Caped Crusader, but only moments into the nearly three-hour film, a (predominantly white) gang terrorizes Gothamites on the metro. One of the few non-white members of this gang is leery of mugging an Asian, and when Batman shows up, he refuses to join the fight against our hero.

And that, Batman fans, is the signal of what’s to come. Virtually every villain in this movie is white, including the primary villain, The Riddler, and his online chat group of followers, who wildly cheer as he serially murders Gotham’s white elite. It tacitly suggests what might occur if the white men who form 4Chan, the anonymous online community, come to life and terrorize a city.

Therein rests the plot of the movie. An inexperienced Batman must solve the riddle of who is gruesomely murdering the white men of Gotham’s Ruling Class. While a black woman mayoral candidate promises to rid the metropolis of crime and bring back trust in the government, Wayne, being the scion of one of the city’s most prominent families, also becomes a target for the Riddler’s bloodlust. Those in power or who were in power because of their privilege must be purged, The Riddler believes.

In keeping with the motif that whites are criminals, two major characters have been blackwashed.

Catwoman, previously played by the very white Michelle Pfeiffer (1992’s Batman Returns) and Anne Hathaway (2012’s The Dark Knight Rises), is now the part-black, part-Jewish actress, Zoe Kravitz. And she plays the feline anti-heroine as a bisexual. Promoting sexual deviance is another item on the MCU agenda.

(In fact, Kravitz isn’t the trailblazer Leftist Hollywood Millennials think. Eartha Kitt, the North Carolina–born, black chanteuse who warbled in French all across Europe in the 1950s, played Catwoman in the television series that ran from 1966 through 1968. But that casting decision likely wasn’t politically motivated blackwashing. Almost everyone in the movies and on television was white. Hollywood was Leftist, but not yet Woke, and had not openly decreed that whites must be replaced.

Oddly, though Hollywood is always looking for nonwhites to blackwash films, supposedly because of the “systemic racism” and implicit bias that “people of color” face in Hollywood, Kravitz claims that she was deemed “too urban,” to play in Nolan’s beloved Batman trilogy:

Kravitz recently told The Observer that her attempt to audition for a role in Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises” was rejected after she was told she was too “urban” for the part. Kravitz did not disclose whether the role was for Catwoman, which ended up being played by Anne Hathaway in “The Dark Knight Rises.”

“I don’t know if it came directly from Chris Nolan,” Kravitz said. “I think it was probably a casting director of some kind, or a casting director’s assistant. … Being a woman of color and being an actor and being told at that time that I wasn’t able to read because of the color of my skin, and the word urban being thrown around like that, that was what was really hard about that moment.”

[Zoë Kravitz Opens Up on Losing ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Audition Because of Her Skin Color, by Zack Sharf, Variety, March 7, 2022]

This new Catwoman is also extremely Woke and not just because she swings both ways. In one of the most forcibly contrived lines in the film, she tells The Batman that the elites who die at the hands of The Riddler are nothing but “white privileged assholes.” Of course, she doesn’t know she is talking to Bruce Wayne, who personifies the toxic white privilege she loathes.

It’s a curious Leftist political sentiment to include in the movie, even for Hate-Whitey Hollywood. Wayne took up fighting crime because he witnessed his parents’ murder. The Riddler’s first victim is the white mayor, a man whose surviving son plays a significant role. Batman sees himself in the fatherless lad. How much “privilege” do whites have, given that they are the Riddler’s targets?

Police Commissioner James Gordon, played by screen legend Gary Oldman in the Nolan trilogy, has also become black. One of Batman’s only allies on the Gotham police force, he is portrayed by black actor Jeffrey Wright, who told Haute Living about the white supremacist past of fictional Gotham City a.k.a. New York City:

It would be doing a disservice, in fact, to these stories and to the history if we were actually beholden to the details of the original. … Gordon is many things. He’s relative to Gotham City, to the Gotham City police department, to Batman, to justice and to corruption—and none of those things require that he be white. …

Gotham City was fashioned after an American metropolis much like New York City or Chicago. In 1939, New York was 90 percent white. The power structure in law enforcement in that city at that time would not have been inclusive of someone who looked like me; that’s the historical fact. But as these stories have continually evolved … not only through the comics but also through the films, they’ve been reinterpreted … to be more contemporary. … [I]f we were to imagine a Gotham City based on an American metropolis, to think of it as a place that’s only inhabited by white people is to be pretty idiotic. To be beholden to the demographic reality of 1939 urban America—what the f–k is the purpose of that?

[Bond, Batman And Bernard Lowe: A Banner Year For Jeffrey Wright, by Laura Schreffler, September 27, 2021]


Gary Oldman, Gotham Police Commissioner James Gordon

The demographic reality of America in 1939, before 1965’s immigration disaster, will always be objectionable relative to the vaunted “Current Year.”  But the past cannot be changed, and will always remind us of what we have lost. As The Great Replacement comes to Gotham, we are supposed to be unconcerned that a character like James Gordon is changed from a hardened white man and ally of Batman, to just another token black. Apparently, we’re supposed to believe the replacement of white characters in the Batman mythology is somehow an improvement.

But that’s where The Batman—and the rest of the superhero business—is in Woke America, 2022. And this raises some serious questions.

As The Batman, Bruce Wayne must save Gotham, but for whom? Why should the son of the most privileged white family in Gotham risk his life to save the city if his family’s past is nothing but white privilege and supremacy? Remember, the bisexual, multiracial Catwoman, who also happens to be his love interest, said The Riddler’s victims were nothing but “white privileged assholes.”

The Batman is enjoyable, but it feels more like a goodbye to the white hero—instead of the start of another series. In fact, that’s probably what it is.

D.C. Comics has already blackwashed the Caped Crusader in its books. As The New York Times reported a little more than two years ago, “[f]ans of DC Comics have been told for months that a new Batman will premiere in January”:

They were also teased that underneath the costume of the new Caped Crusader would likely be a person of color. … [H]e is Timothy Fox, one of the sons of Lucius Fox, a business associate of Bruce Wayne, the original Batman.

Timothy Fox will appear as the title hero in Future State: The Next Batman, a four-issue series written by John Ridley, the screenwriter of “12 Years a Slave.”

[Under the Mask, the Next Batman Will Be Black, by George Gustines, New York Times, December 10, 2019]

How long before the new, black Batman becomes the cinematic staple, we don’t know. We do know, as we learned last year, that HBO plans to brown Superman, that “strange visitor from another planet, who came to Earth with powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men,” as the 1950s television program described him [Michael B. Jordan Is Developing a Black Superman Project for HBO Max, by Rebecca Alter, The Vulture, July 21, 2021].

Perhaps The Batman shows that Gotham, even the United States, aren’t worth saving. When the man who dons cape and cowl to restore law and order is attacked as a “white privileged asshole,” perhaps it’s time to just let the criminals win.

What is The Batman struggling to save, after all? The Great Replacement? A degenerate civilization that deems whites the enemy of humanity?

The real Batman—the right-wing hero created when the America that whites built from nothing was the envy of the world—would have no reason to fight for what America is today.

Paul Kersey[Email him] is the author of the blog SBPDL, and has published the books SBPDL Year One, Hollywood in Blackface and Escape From Detroit, Opiate of America: College Football in Black and White and Second City Confidential: The Black Experience in Chicagoland. His latest book is The Tragic City: Birmingham 1963-2013.

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