Batman Fans Think Paul Dano's Riddler Might Be Inspired By the Zodiac Killer in This Leaked Image

·4 min read

Here’s something you might’ve remembered in the last 30 seconds: there’s a Batman movie! Coming to theaters. It might be soon. It might not be. The pandemic delayed The Batman's release a few times. But time is relative now. In the midst of Batfleck’s return in the Snyder Cut, a couple of Marvel shows, and a global catastrophe, I'll admit that I forgot that Robert Pattinson will put on the cowl and skulk around for two and a half hours. Maybe you did too.

Regardless: The Batman, which is directed by Matt Reeves, will hit theaters on March 4, 2022. And the Batman Hive (Cave?)—or at least the corner of it dedicated to Battinson—sprung to life this week after a few promotional images from the film leaked. Pictures from what fans believe is a calendar associated with The Batman show new looks at the Batman suit, Zoë Kravitz’s Selina Kyle/Catwoman, and Paul Dano’s The Riddler.

Fans seem especially hyped for The Riddler, who looks noticeably different than, say, Jim Carrey’s all-camp-no-brakes take on the character. Check out what fans are saying about Dano’s villain—who’s sporting a mask, clear glasses, and vague horror vibes—comparing the look to the Zodiac Killer, who also had a creepy mask-and-glasses getup.

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The images track with everything we know about The Batman so far—which seems like it’ll be even more of a quote-unquote gritty, dark, take on Bruce Wayne’s world than Christopher Nolan's trilogy. Here’s how Reeves describes it: "It's very much a point of view-driven, noir Batman tale," he told The Hollywood Reporter. "It's told very squarely on his shoulders, and I hope it's going to be a story that will be thrilling but also emotional. It’s more Batman in his detective mode that we’ve seen in the films."

If Bats is going into his next outing in full detective mode, then it makes sense that his adversary would be inspired by the Zodiac Killer, whose cyphers still puzzle researchers over 40 years since his last recorded activity. With The Batman’s hype train revving back up, let’s hope that more teases from the film will be in store this summer.

Photo credit: Mike Kim
Photo credit: Mike Kim

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