Alright, the Super Bowl concluded last night and I no longer have to listen to very loud and overconfident Eagles fans boast about their team for another year (although I do have to hear them complain about officiating). I was at a neighbor’s house for the first half taking notes on, well… Apple’s Notes app until I decided I needed someplace warmer and someplace quieter to finish my scrutinization of advertising’s big night. So without further ado, the ad that I will be unpacking in this particular blog will be none other than the debut trailer for “The Flash” (Sorry Avocados From Mexico. You were a close second, and you always do such a terrific job.).
Michael. Fucking. Keaton. Need I say more? I don’t, but I will. That’s right, this movie is called “The Flash,” and the thing that grabbed me the most was Michael Keaton (looking spry in his old age with some movie magic) reprising his role as Batman. For those of you that don’t know, Batman is the first movie that I ever saw in a movie theater in 1989. I had to be accompanied by my older cousin because it was PG-13 (I felt very cool). Another fun fact, The Flash is my favorite superhero. This movie already has a lot going for it.
On the downside, when I initially watched Ezra Miller as The Flash in a previous movie, I thought his running mechanics looked very robotic for a hero whose powers rely on speed — and running plays a big part in that. Can we get the kid a running coach or something? One thing that I did think he nailed flawlessly was Barry’s wisecracking nature that I enjoyed during the Justice League animated series. This iteration seems to focus on Barry’s ability to travel through time (cosmic treadmill requirement?), so there will be at least two Barry Allens. I think I also saw Grant Gustin from The Flash TV series on the CW make an appearance in the IMDB credits, and I hope that’s true because he was amazing in that show and I was a huge advocate for him making a leap to the silver screen in that role. Similarly, my hero Bruce Wayne will have several actors playing him throughout the DC multiverse since the trailer showed at least Michael Keaton and Ben Affleck (Batfleck) will be present, and there’s speculation that Christian Bale may also be in this one as well.
Michael Keaton’s voiceover at the beginning of the trailer poses a question to Barry asking why he chooses to be in this timeline if he can be in any timeline. He replies that it’s the one where his mom is still alive, but Barry remarks that time has a pattern, which may imply that it’s only a matter of time before she dies in this timeline too. Ben Affleck’s Batman warns The Flash about the dangers of changing the past, and it sounds like that’s good advice because Barry soon laments that he “broke the universe.” We then see a familiar foe in General Zod. After the 2 versions of Barry get an introduction to the OG Batman in the Batcave and we see him do a swan dive, we get to see a familiar motorcycle amidst some traffic before seeing a really cool sequence where each Flash goes back-to-back with some stellar lightning effects, creating a maelstrom with their fist, and then we see… laser vision?!
That’s right, no Cal El in this one. No Clark Kent. No Superman. We do, however, get introduced to Kara (Zor-El), AKA Supergirl. We see her emerge from an icy prison, flying around, easily taking out guards with her fists in what looks like a hospital gown. Later we see her flying next to a plane that Barry and Barry are in, and she is in a suit similar to Superman’s as Barry is recording her with a smartphone (for posterity). The trailer ends as she flies away, leaving a sonic boom in her wake.
But who could the villain be? In the CW show, they addressed this early on. What will James Gunn and the DC crew decide to do with this blank canvas that many have said could serve as a way to start fresh with the DC Universe on the big screen? And what will I do? I’ll tell you what I’ll do… I’ll buy 3 IMAX tickets on opening night and watch the hell out of this movie! That’s what I’ll do!