Yesterday, the lovely Kristin Lai wrote this piece on Kevin Smith's reaction to seeing the new mask and teaser for Batman v Superman, and it was one of those articles where a single comment just wouldn't suffice as a response!
As much as it pains me to disagree with one of the kings of the comic book world, I just don't share his enthusiasm over the SDCC teaser, specifically, those glowing white eyes.
For many fans, Smith included, these eyes are the embodiment of the Dark Knight Returns version of Batman, and that is definitely accurate. But personally, I feel like that is an element of the costume that just doesn't translate to live-action that well.
I saw the teaser from SDCC, and with the glowing eyes on both sides, I actually wanted to roll my eyes a little. They just looked so very OTT, and part of me expected to hear that little high-pitched whirring noise you used to get with toys that had "lasers" on them. Think Buzz Lightyear and you get the idea.
To me, it felt like a bit of a step backwards to the days of added twinkles in the eyes, and ridiculously fake laser-beams in B-movies. I'm hoping, I'm flat-out praying that these will not be throughout the movie, and that the rest of it will be fantastic to the point that it actually works. If every time we see the bat, he has these glowing white eyes, I just don't think I'll be able to take him seriously.
It works in other media, but I think that has a lot to do with images like the one above, where without the white eyes, we wouldn't see the eyes at all. There are elements that work in comic book art that don't have the same impact in live action. In ink, these eyes look like those of a wild animal that you might catch in the shadows. They have a touch of eyeshine, and animalistic eyes on a man are terrifying! But glowy glassy eyes in a mask? Not so much.
It's also not new! Some of the reaction really surprised me, mostly because it centers around "finally" getting the white eyes, when we've had them before. In The Dark Knight, Batman has these lovely eyes for his cellular sonar tech. Although it was only in there for a few scenes, we've absolutely seen it before, and I don't remember this level of excitement when it did. (Of course, I wasn't writing about movie news at the time, so I may simply have missed it!)
It's possible that a similar thing will happen with Batman v Superman, of course. The SDCC teaser is only a minute or two long, and that could be the only scene where we see this. It could be a late addition to the suit's weaponry as a reaction to something that happens in an earlier fight. If they only appear briefly, I would honestly be much happier, but what do you think?