“Swear to me!” Err, nah, I’m alright, chief, think I’ll pass…
Yep, Christian Bale has finally discussed his ‘unique’ Batman voice. By unique, I mean an incoherent, lispy growl. Whilst I can fully understand and appreciate the need to differentiate Batman’s voice from Bruce Wayne’s, Bale’s delivery was just simply too much – at least for me, anyways.
Speaking to MTV, the star of Christopher Nolan’s Bat trilogy revealed,
“I got there. They put me in Val Kilmer’s suit. It didn’t even fit properly, and I stood in it and I went, ‘I feel like an idiot.’ What kind of guy walks around dressed like a bat? And is then going to go, ‘Hello, how are you? Just ignore that I’m dressed as a bat.’ Of course, he’s meant to be doing this. If you look at the history of the guy and the pain he went through, I went, ‘I can’t do this in a normal voice. I have to become a beast in order to sell this to myself.’ I went home that evening, and my wife said, ‘How’d it go?’ I went, ‘I kind of did this.’ And I showed her, and she went, ‘Oh, you fucked that one up, didn’t you?’ Thank God they went for it.”
In terms of whether he’d advise Ben Affleck to implement a similar voice in Batman vs Superman, Bale said,
“The voice ain’t for everybody. Ben’s obviously going to have to do his own thing, but it was the only way that I could find how to get into that and to justify wearing the fricking Batsuit. Otherwise, he’s just loopy beyond belief. He’s loopy, but he’s loopy with a method to his madness.”
Maybe, just maybe, it’s me here, but the above comes off to me as if Bale is almost embarrassed to be playing a comic book character. With a character like Batman, one of the icons of the comic book world and of pop culture, you shouldn’t feel stupid in the Batsuit and be looking for an out to justify why you are in it. You should embrace it! It’s the fucking Batsuit, for Christ’s sake! So Bale developed ‘the voice’ in order to ‘sell’ the idea of Batman being Batman to himself?
It frustrates the hell out of me that so many people constantly praise Bale for being such a great Batman, yet those same people are already jumping all over Affleck as Batman. If you are going to do a movie that’s based, no matter how loosely, on a comic book character, you cannot, cannot, cannot be ashamed in any way of that character and his world. There’s no need to justify anything whatsoever in a comic book movie. We expect larger than life characters, we expect huge, unbelievable spectacles, we’re happy to suspend disbelief for that certain time period. That’s the point. If the actor is struggling to justify such a role to themselves, how can said actor really expect the audience to accept that character and their performance?
Bring on the Batfleck already...