Because The Batman is the movie equivalent of your drama friend — you know, the one who "hates attention" but ultimately cannot function without it, and will only take a 24 hour sabbatical from social media if he or she is literally at death's door (the wifi is terrible there) — it refuses to go even a week without popping up in the news to cast fresh doubt on the #DCEU's ability to get its shit together. This attention whore needs oxygen, you know.
The latest piece of speculation on the relentless merry-go-round of telephone surrounding the solo Batman movie suggests that its bad guy, #Deathstroke the Terminator, may no longer be the villain of the piece after all. The source of this not-entirely-heartbreaking rumor? It's the Merc himself. Speaking on daytime TV, Joe Manganiello was surprisingly coy about his future role in the DCEU:
"Umm. Maybe. Well, we'll see."
That doesn't exactly inspire confidence, considering the last thing we heard about this movie was that new director Matt Reeves would effectively be starting fresh with the script and possibly the story, too.
Before you go into fanboy panic mode, though, it's worth remembering that Reeves only signed up to direct on the promise that he'd have complete creative control, so he's basically the only person who knows for sure (or has an idea of) what's going on with The Batman at this point. Having already announced Deathstroke before the shake-up in the director's seat, there's a pretty strong chance he'll still have some role to play in this movie — even if he's not the ultimate big bad.
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For my money, that wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. Deathstroke and Batman make well-matched enemies because both are masters of hand-to-hand combat and both have an arsenal of advanced technological weaponry at their disposal, rather than relying on superpowers. But the Deathstroke of DC Comics is not a traditional member of Batman's rogues gallery, and a great Batman movie should feature a great Batman villain. I'd be happy enough with Deathstroke acting as a right-hand man of the film's primary antagonist, rather than fulfilling that role himself.
The Batman won't film until 2018, with Reeves hard at work finishing post-production on War for the Planet of the Apes until summer and then turning his attentions to the world of superheroes. In short, don't expect a definitive answer on whether Deathstroke is in or out for at least the next six months or so.
Do you want to see Deathstroke as The Batman's real villain, just as a henchman, or should he be saved for a different movie?