People sometimes wonder where #Batman would be without his trusty sidekick Robin. But it's not having the Boy Wonder at his side that has gotten Batman to where he is today. There's someone else, someone who has been there far longer than anyone else.
I speak of course of Alfred Pennyworth, trusty butler to the Wayne family and sometime military man. Almost every version of Batman, across multiverses and media, has an Alfred. The butler, the guardian, the father-figure and the right hand man.
So of course he features as part of the DC Extended Universe. He appeared first in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, portrayed by Hollywood heavyweight Jeremy Irons, and is set to return alongside Batman / #BruceWayne (Ben Affleck) in the upcoming #JusticeLeague and The Batman.
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Justice League is going to be pivotal for the #DCEU. After the first three installments — Man of Steel, Batman v Superman and Suicide Squad — all failed to perform critically, Justice League is looking like it could be the turning point for the cinematic franchise, adopting a significantly lighter tone and hopefully taking itself a bit less seriously.
Coming Soon caught up with Irons at the press junket for his new movie — Assassin's Creed, which releases at the end of the month — and the actor revealed a little bit more about Alfred's role in the upcoming movie.
Coming Soon asked Irons if the change of tone for Justice League — which has now wrapped filming — affected the way he played Alfred in the movie. Thankfully he confirmed that we'll be seeing more of the same from Sassy Alfred, a good choice considering that his sarcastic and grounded portrayal of Bruce's right hand man was one of the brightest spots of Batman v Superman.
But not only that, Irons also confirmed that he's got a bigger role and more responsibilities this time around, as Alfred will be dealing not only with Batman, but the rest of the Justice League as it forms around the Dark Knight:
"Alfred is a stickler for staying the same. He tries to modulate everybody else. In a very gentle, English way he tries to deal with these people who can do all these extraordinary things in a very calm way, a very grounded way. He does not modulate at all. He sometimes lets Bruce Wayne out a bit on the lead, but he’s still attached."
While the Justice League is out punching villains in the face and saving the world, Alfred is the one who will be keeping the whole thing grounded — and not just because he'll be keeping the Batcave clean and tidy.
The DCEU Alfred has been the most active we've seen on the big screen so far, echoing certain stories from DC comics such as Earth One and Injustice. In Batman v Superman he functions not only as the architect of Batman's armor and weaponry, but also actively features in punching crime in the face as he remotely pilots the Batwing to assist Bruce on his late night outings.
His function as father-figure is also pushed to the forefront here, as he doesn't pull his punches when it comes to some good old fashioned English nagging. He openly criticizes Bruce for his inability to lead a normal life, meet a nice woman and start a nice family. He also calls Bruce out when he needs to be called out, like when he starts getting all ragey about Superman. Although Bruce's stubborn mind makes him a hard one to challenge, Alfred attempts to do so anyway.
While other versions of Alfred, such as Michael Caine's in The Dark Knight trilogy, also had this dynamic, they typically drew back into the role of the butler when challenged. Iron's Alfred doesn't give an inch to Bruce, because Bruce needs him more than he'd care to admit. And this makes him pretty important moving forward because — as Batman v Superman proved — someone has to keep that ego in check.
The only criticism we have of Irons's performance thus far is that there's precious little of him in Batman v Superman in among all the Doomsday-punching, Martha-shouting and superhero-scowling going on. But Justice League is going to sort that out, and we can't wait to see him rubbing shoulders with Wonder Woman, Flash, Aquaman and Cyborg.
And you can bet he'll be able to sort out this whole Superman mess too. Someone has to. Failing that, at least there'll be tea.
Which was your favorite Alfred moment from Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice? Tell us in the comments below!
(Source: Coming Soon)