With the release of The Batman, a whole new DC Universe has been established. This universe appears to be leaning into a more grounded approach with its villains, such as The Riddler and The Penguin. With this in mind, we could be seeing something similar with our mystery character seen at the end of the film. With this in mind, let’s break down what could be next for Robert Pattinson’s Dark Knight.
VIDEO: What’s Next for The Batman?
Watch our video below!
Also, I’ll issue a SPOILER WARNING now for anyone who has not yet seen The Batman.
Where We Left The Dark Knight
The Batman concluded with The Riddler’s plan working fairly well, resulting in Gotham being flooded and many likely killed. Batman did manage to stop The Riddler’s plan from being as catastrophic as it could have been, but right now, Gotham is likely in complete turmoil.
Batman: Zero Year Adaptation?
With Gotham in this state, we could see an adaptation of Batman: Zero Year, where a very similar event took place in Gotham leaving it a wasteland. Batman was left to navigate and protect the altered city, and adopted a more post-apocalyptic attire. While I do expect to see the aftermath of the floods in the next film, I don’t think they will go as far as the comics did. The flooding will likely just result in a spike in crime, making Gotham more dangerous than ever.
The Riddler & The Joker
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The Riddler survived the events of this film, and was last seen in Arkham Asylum talking to a mysterious prisoner with a familiar laugh. Director Matt Reeves has confirmed that this was in fact The Joker, but not yet the Joker we all know. Reeves explained this is a Joker who has yet to achieve his full potential, and at this point is just another criminal Batman put away in Arkham.
The Batman‘s Joker
This version of The Joker (played by Barry Keoghan) was said to be a serial killer as well, but his origin is quite different. Reeves said that this Joker, rather than falling in a vat of chemicals permanently scarring him, was born with a facial deformity where he can’t stop smiling.
Matt Reeves told fans that this tease at the end of the film wasn’t meant to directly tee up the sequel, but to better establish the characters that exist in this universe. We believe that Joker will have a role to play in The Batman’s next outing, but they could be saving him for his full Joker debut until later.
Court of Owls?
In the meantime, it’s been highly rumored that the Court of Owls could potentially be the villains of the next installment of this series. With The Waynes and other high profile Gothamites’ deep rooted history of shady business in the city, Reeves could dig deeper to the route of these underground activities. The Court of Owls in the comics essentially ran the inner workings of Gotham for years, and we could follow a similar story in the sequel.
The Riddler’s Return?
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With The Riddler being left alive at the end of the film, chances are they intend to use the character again. We could see the character take on a similar role that Calendar Man took in Batman: The Long Halloween, acting as a resource for Batman to use for information on serial killers. Very much so like Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs.
Finally, we could see Mr. Freeze appear in a future installment. While a less grounded villain, Matt Reeves has expressed interest in the character and explained he does feel that he could be adapted in a realistic way. We haven’t seen a version of this character since Arnold Schwarzenegger’s portrayal, and I imagine Reeve’s vision will be quite different than the pun-inspired character from Batman & Robin.
Arkham Asylum & The Penguin HBOMax Series
The Batman is currently playing exclusively in theaters. What do you think is next for The Batman? Do you expect to see him face off against The Court of Owls or Mr. Freeze? Or do you think we’ll see him face off against The Joker? Let us know in the comments and on our Twitter!