ByJonas Casillas, writer at
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Jonas Casillas

The conclusion of the Dark Knight trilogy was a nice send off to the world director Christopher Nolan created, but what if this wasn't the end? What if this was the set up for the future for the Batman in a Cinematic Universe? To make the Caped Crusader transition to a new world as well as his audience.

Change scares people and maybe Batman is not so different after all. Batman and his audience would have experienced the transition from a gritty and realistic world to a world that, not only matches his resolve, but also introduces a series of characters with intentions that not even our Caped Crusader understands. Which begs the question: "Can anyone truly be Batman?"

The alternate cast I present to you is from an alternate universe in which Mr. Nolan's Dark Knight still exists but also struggling with the fact that the world is changing and the enemy is no longer mob bosses or warlords. And, we as an audience, make that leap of faith with him. Serving as both a sequel and reboot of the franchise without the abrupt origin change.

We will see our new Batman next year but I think it would had been nice to see the in between where we experience our Batpod riding hero and our future alien fighting vigilante.

'The Dark Knight Rises' [Credit: Warner Bros.]
'The Dark Knight Rises' [Credit: Warner Bros.]

Without further ado, here's the alternate cast for the follow up of the Dark Knight universe a few years after the conclusion of the Dark Knight Rises:

1. Joseph Gordon-Levitt - John Blake / Batman

John Blake is our eyes in to this world that may or may not still need him. Blake understands that Batman is a means to an end, but what end would that be? He sees this opportunity as an improvement from his days as a Gotham PD officer and detective, delivering unfiltered justice. But what exactly is that fuels this desire? Is it an ideal that moves him or the naive belief that he can do what Bruce Wayne tried to accomplish? He was inspired once by Batman but can he do the same? The shadow of the Bat might be too heavy for the man under the cape and cowl.

2. Jensen Ackles - Jason Todd / Red Hood

You can't stop crime. That's what you never understood. I'm controlling it. You wanna rule them by fear. But what do you do with the ones who aren't afraid? I'm doing what you won't, I'm taking them out. - Red Hood to Batman

In this alternate universe, Jason and Blake know each other from their days in the orphanage. Blake not having the resources or training that Bruce Wayne had, he needs to resort to others to keep going. Both reach for the same goal but one man may understand this new world better than the other and that man is not John Blake. Jason demands Blake to make Batman take the next step on his evolution and if he can't understand that, then he doesn't deserve to be Batman.

3. Cassidy Freeman - Barbara Gordon / Oracle

Batman will always need a Gordon on his side. Gordon is the consciousness that puts Batman back on the right track every time Batman deviates from the path.

Years after the death of Commissioner James Gordon, Barbara, his daughter now a Gotham PD officer, returns to the city that his father once defended with the Caped Crusader. Barbara returns for the memory of his late father and to try to meet the man that his father considered an inspiration and a friend. If her father trusted a vigilante, why wouldn't she?.

4. Juno Temple - Jen / Robin

Jen feels betrayed by Selina Kyle aka Catwoman when she left her and the East End, the territory she once swore to protect, to its own fate for the Batman. Jen steps in to the Robin persona, a name she chose for the meaning behind the bird's name. She once heard a story in the orphanage about how the first sighting of a Robin during the cold winter means that better times are coming. She wants to give hope to the people she cares about, even though her last remnants of hope left with Selina.

A name that John Blake chose as well to adopt for himself after hearing the same story once. There might be more things in common between these two than we thought.

Will Jen prove to be an ally or foe?

5. Ellen Burstyn - Dr. Leslie Maurin Thompkins

Dr. Thompkins quit her job as a doctor at Gotham General when her friend and colleague Thomas Wayne was killed outside the theater. Leslie decides to open a clinic that offers help to the most needed in the same alley Thomas Wayne was murdered. She believes crimes like these can be prevented if help is offered right away. She also reaches out to the youth left orphaned by Gotham City.

Batman is the outcome Leslie tried to prevent all these years. What went wrong?

6. Alison Brie - Dr. Harleen F. Quinzel / Harley Quinn

Dr. Harleen Frances Quinzel resides at the Arkham Asylum for the Criminal Insane. She feels at home surrounded by the "unfit to function in society due to abnormal behavior" or in short "crazy". Dr. Quinzel understands these poor souls since she relates to the rejection of the society's status quo. Never seemed to fit in, Arkham Asylum provides a refuge for the inmates and for her. She encourages the inmates to embrace their personalities, to live free inside this prison of theirs. But not even this sanctuary is able to remain untouched by the outside world and Dr. Quinzel will have to decide to remain a bystander or embrace what makes her so special, her love for madness.

7. Daniel Radcliffe - Edward Nygma / The Riddler

A psychiatrist residing at Blackgate Penitentiary, Dr. Edward Nygma evaluates inmates to see if they are transferred to Arkham Asylum or remain locked up in the penitentiary. Sounds familiar? Well, Nygma was once the colleague of Dr. Jonathan Crane (Scarecrow) and both of them were under the wing of Dr. Hugo Strange. Heavily influenced by the works of H.P. Lovecraft, Crane and Nygma embraced the horror and mystery of his works. Dr. Crane tried horror to control Gotham and to acquire power and Dr. Nygma knows real power lies on superior intelligence and the most valuable currency will be, one day, knowledge. By learning Batman's identity, Nygma knows he would be holding the most valuable possession of them all.

8. Nick Frost - Humpty Dumpty / Dr. Hugo Strange

What better way to conceal yourself than in plain sight? Dr. Hugo Strange has been trying to understand all his life what moves Gotham forward. Is this city alive? He has lived in Arkham Asylum under the Humpty Dumpty persona, a broken and deformed man for far too long thinking that the answer is to understand the madness that drives man to do amazing and despicable things. Once Batman appeared in his life, all doubt was erased.

Dr. Strange has been trying to understand the man under the cowl but realized later on that is not the man that he needs to understand but the mask which holds what Hugo Strange has been chasing for far too long: immortality. He reasons that to survive Gotham, it would require to achieve godhood and Batman holds the key.

9. Jeffrey Dean Morgan - Floyd Lawton / Deadshot

Every big event requires a catalyst to set it all in motion. Floyd Lawton will always carry out a contract once he is paid, not matter what or who. Connecting the events in Gotham, even if he's not aware of them, will be the role of the world's deadliest marksman. Ignorance is bliss and not even all the money in the world would have convinced him to take this job if he had known what his actions had set in motion.

10. Matt Bomer - Richard "Dick" Grayson / The Batman

Richard "Dick" Grayson is the protege of Floyd Lawton aka Deadshot. Dick is Floyd's weapons specialist and data analyst. Dick doesn't agree with Floyd's world but he has been good to him ever since he took him in at an early age.

But this time, Floyd's targets are all good men and women, and not even loyalty can make Dick agree with this job. One of these targets is Gotham's own Batman. Dick is intrigued and once he meets John Blake, both men will realize their true destiny. One man is in charge to protect Batman's legacy until Gotham finds the true heir of the mask and cowl. The time has come, for Batman can be anyone but only if Gotham allows it.

11. Gotham City

[Credit: DC Comics]
[Credit: DC Comics]

Gotham is alive. She will test her children at every opportunity she has. A city that's always fighting with herself, trying to find her identity and in the process creates the worst of monsters and the most benevolent of creatures. The night of Bruce Wayne's parents' murder, Gotham decided to pit one against the other and that time, it appeared the monster came out victorious. But as a result, Gotham gave birth to one of her most gracious children, Bruce Wayne as the Batman. Gotham created Batman as a necessity back then and knowing that the man couldn't possibly last forever, put John Blake in charge of protecting his legacy until the time comes of choosing a new heir.


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