The most hated man in Boston. Some say they hate him. Some say he’s charming. Some say he can’t be forgiven for the mistakes he made in his past. Some say he is innocent. Some say he deserves to die.
“Man, I’m wicked glad I’m not that guy!” – Whitey Bulger on Affleck being cast as Batman
That’s right, folks! My prophecy has come true. Those of you who know me well have frequently heard me make the claim, “Buddy ol’ pal, one of these days Ben Affleck will unite the people as one!” Well… hate to say I told you so. Partly because it sounds smug and also because I’ve never said that thing about Affleck uniting anyone… ‘til now*.
*You'll get the full effect by doing your best Christian Bale Batman voice while saying "til now"
Anywho… By now you’ve heard the story, found it wasn’t a prank, and then proceeded to read/listen to everyone’s attempt at being the first to make the “Matt Damon as Robin joke”. However you learned, we were all somewhere when the news broke. Some of you were folding laundry. Some of you were in class. And, let’s face it. Some of you were probably absentmindedly checking Facebook on the toilet. Just like when Kennedy was shot. Wherever you were, one thing suddenly became clear as day: everyone has an opinion about Ben Affleck. Everyone and their moms. And holy virtual crap, Batman… most of them are negative.
In all seriousness, maybe we shouldn’t be discussing this in all seriousness. But in half-seriousness, let’s all take a breath, calm down, have a snack, and listen to Old Uncle D ramble on for a few mildly amusing paragraphs. Before we go further, however, in the interest of full disclosure, I should admit that I am an Affleck fan. It’s true. We’re out there. We look just like you. We’re your bankers, your teachers, your Wal-Mart greeters… I think… I hope.
In my humble opinion (…because as you know humble opinions are always expressed by amateur bloggers on the web for all to see…) there are a few things that we should take into consideration before we start writing petitions to the White House about… huh?... what’s that?... seriously?... well, we should look at them anyway.
“No one’s worse than Ben Affleck!”
First of all, you’re wrong. You’re wrong and you’re fat! Okay, that was out of line. But still, he’s not as bad as the faceless mobs on the internet would have you believe. You may have some weird personal vendetta against the guy, but just because I don’t personally like Milli Vanilli doesn’t mean those guys couldn’t sing something fierce. Go ahead, try to blame it on the rain.
“He’s made some crappy films!”
Patton Oswalt already beat me to the punch when he stated “Yeah, the dude’s made some bad films. Every actor has. Every actor does. Every actor will.” On top of that, not a lot of people have handled their failures with a braver self-depracating humor than he has. By the way, if someone offered you a few million dollars to be in a twisty, action thriller with Academy Award Nominee Gary Sinise and have a love scene with Charlize Theron… you’d probably say yes and worry about it later as well. If you need more proof though, check this out: Top 10 Affleck Performances
This one, I will give it to you, but maybe not for the same reason. Whether it had been a good movie or not, I’m just not a huge fan of the same actor playing separate superheroes, at least within such a close time frame. There’s just something about The Human Torch and Capt. America being played by Chris Evans (even though I liked Evans as the Star Spangled Man with a Plan) or Ryan Reynolds playing Deadpool and The Green Lantern (even though I like Ryan Reynolds) that irks me.
“Affleck’s just not dark enough!”
Come on! You think you had a rough week? Affleck apparently invented time travel only to accidentally travel back to 2004. Guy is on top of the world, winning Oscars, married to Jennifer Garner with three kids, finally got passed that level of Candy Crush that’s been holding him back for weeks… and then BOOM! The internet fills up with Afflection (a word similar to affliction to describe the hatred people feel specifically towards Ben)! As if losing everything… his career, his fiancé, his dignity… as if that wasn’t enough ten years ago, he’s getting a clear reminder of how cruel anyone with a keyboard and internet connection can be. Maybe that’s all this is. Maybe America is just trying to help him get into character.
So in conclusion, you don’t have to be excited about the Affleck Bat Flick. I wasn’t when I heard. Then again, I wasn’t angry either, just surprised. He might be good, he might be not so good. But if you can learn anything from casting choices in movies, it is that no one, no matter who you cast, will guarantee a good movie. Even if you got Christian Bale back it’s not a sure thing or even if you somehow convinced someone like… I don’t know… George Clooney to play Batman. I kid, I kid.
Let’s all just be happy that if you can care even a little bit about this, life ain’t that bad right now. Oh, and lastly by the way, since when did people suddenly start saying “Man of Steel” was such a great movie in the first place?