Superman Vs Batman: Battle of The Franchises Part 3
Welcome back to Battle of the Franchises. If this is your first time with this battle please check out the previous 2 articles before continuing. When we last left off Superman proved to have the better follow up making the end result 1-1. Now in order to form a tie breaker we have Superman 3 and Superman 4 vs Batman Forever and Batman and Robin.
Here we have Lester vs Schumacker in a battle to determine who is the lesser of two evils.
Now I should clarify why I'm comparing the two entries in both franchises instead of one at a time. In the end it comes to another similarity between the two franchises when it comes to the third installment. While the general consensus from fans is that the third installment is bad (I hold Batman Forever as a guilty pleasure) it tends to be forgotten by the horrendous 4th installment. I do agree that the third movies should factor into this battle it still doesn't make sense having the movies duke it out all alone like the previous installments. So without further adu, let's continue with the third battle.
After Richard Donner left the Superman franchise before part 2 could be completed, Richard Lester took over with an emphasis on comedy for the next two films. In the case of the third movie, comedian Richard Pryor (what's with all the Richards in the Superman franchise?) was brought in as a kind of/sort of villain against Superman and creates an artificial kryptonite that turns the Man of Steel evil. Sadly I didn't make that plot up but it wasn't as bad as the follow up Superman 4.
By the time Superman 3 was released pretty much everyone from the original cast claimed they would never do another Superman movie again. This eventually changed with the proposal of the fourth film which managed to include Christopher Reeves, Margot Kidder, and even Gene Hackman. Because of this news the movie received much hype since people assumed the script must be something special in order to bring the cast back (really it was probably just because of a pay check).
The plot of Superman 4 follows Superman who goes through a confusing series of events that causes him to try and rid the world of nuclear weapons despite any real explanation as to why they are now a threat. Meanwhile Lex Luther escapes jail with the help of his nephew Jar Jar Binks (not really but he's about as annoying). Together they take advantage of the situation with Superman and with the made up science these comic book stories are known for manages to create a clone of Superman known as Nuclear Man, a villain who seems similar to Bizarro but has the deadly weapon of long silver fingernails. Needless to say the plot's utterly idiotic, the effects are cheesy even for the time period, and the only generally interesting parts are taken directly from the previous installments.
Next let's talk about Batman Forever. After the boycotts on the Batman Returns toyline at Mcdonalds, the studio decided to create a more family friendly movie based on the character. With the help of Schumacker, we received a movie that ended up as a producer's wet dream, a franchise movie that played it safe and was easily marketable. The plot follows Batman facing against the villainous Two-Face. During this conflict another villain emerges, the Riddler, as well as a new ally in the form of Dick Grayson, who eventually becomes Robin. What I liked about the movie is that they manage to question the necessity of Batman with the inclusion of Robin and it just seemed sort of fun while Superman 3 was mostly boring.
Now naturally Forever proved to be a success so a sequel was inevitably so Batman and Robin was unfortunately born. There's not much history on this movie that you probably don't know so I'll leave it at how Val Kilmer left the franchise and the role went to George Clooney (which was a cool casting choice but did nothing to save this stinker). The plot involves a character I call Steve stealing Batman's suit and brainwashing Robin while they battle a bad Arnold impersinator named Mr. Freeze. Eventually a prostitute named Poison Ivy comes to town in order to confuse the audience into thinking she has a point to the plot. And there's a cheap rip-off of the Hulk's involved to possessing the name of an awesome character but possesses none of the characteristics that makes him awesome. Also for unknown reasons Batgirl is actually Alfred's niece and it's a point that she's British yet has no British accent.
Well you can probably tell that i absolutely hate Batman and Robin with a burning passion. I will say that Batman Forever barely beats out Superman 3 on the basis of being at least mildly entertaining, but between Superman 4 and Batman and Robin it's no contest that Superman easily wins. Don't get me wrong, Superman 4 sucks, but at least it has a cohesive narrative. Granted the villain is stupid but at least Superman 4 created it's own crappy character instead of ruining three of my all time favorite villains. And while Superman 4 may have a stupid moral, at least it was a moral that made sense instead of Batman and Robin's which as far as I could tell is telling kids to quit school and become superheroes. So there's really no contest here that Superman takes this win...by a bat credit card.
So there's my opinion on the lighthearted movies of the Superman and Batman franchises. Like if you liked and comment below on your thoughts on the movies. Also please make suggestions on other comparrisons you'd like to read about. Tomorrow we will look at the two spin off movies from the franchises, Steel vs Catwoman. See you then.
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