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Whatever your view of Zack Snyder's DC superhero movies, there's little argument that his particular take on Batman and Superman would qualify as "non-traditional." One specific way that Snyder broke with previous versions of the character was when he made a version of Batman who had no problem with actually killing people, a line that the character traditionally would not cross in modern films and comics.
However, at a recent Q&A following a screening of Snyder's earlier comic book movie, Watchmen, the director made it clear that he has little sympathy for people who took issue with his version of the classic DC characters, as seen in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, as he feels they made sense for a modern comic book movie. According to Snyder...
Someone says to me 'Oh Batman killed a guy.' I'm like 'Really?' I'm like 'Wake the fuck up.' ... I guess that's what I'm saying about, once you've like lost your virginity to this fucking movie and then you come say to me something about like 'Oh my superhero wouldn't do that.' I'm like 'Are you serious' I'm down the fucking road on that. And it's a cool point of view. Look, I'm 100% fine, it's a cool point of view to be like 'My heroes are still innocent. My heroes didn't lie to America. My heroes didn't embezzle money from their corp, my heroes didn't commit any atrocities.' That's cool, but you're living in a fucking dream world, OK?
Snyder's comments at least make it clear where he was coming from in creating his version of the DC Universe. His earlier film Watchman, and the comic it was based on, argued that if superheroes were real, they would not be the paragon of virtue we're used to seeing in comic books. Snyder believes this idea so strongly that he carried it over to characters like Batman and Superman. He thinks viewing any sort of hero with that sort of idolization is akin to living in a dream world. Everybody has flaws and that should be understood.
While many might agree, the response on Reddit, where Snyder's comments were posted, is largely negative. Many feel that while a story like Watchmen has its place, Batman is something quite different and should be treated as such. Batman's decision not to kill his enemies is a key aspect of the character, and if you change it, he's simply not Batman anymore.
Of course, there's really no right answer to questions like these. There will always be fans of the traditional view of any character with a history as long as the one Batman has. Changes and new interpretations will always happen, but exactly what aspects of the character are immutable won't always be agreed upon. A Batman willing to kill certainly opens up interesting ideas to be explored that wouldn't be there with a more traditional iteration of the character.
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