The State Of The Union: “Batman” Minus Batman

My interpretation of contemporary politics at this point is that it’s like we are all in the 1989 movie Batman but there is no Batman.

This is all like Gotham City without Batman, or like the Robocop world without Robocop. This feels like the set-up for every action-adventure movie from the early 1980s to mid-1990s. You know the ones. With the punk-rock gangsters and clowns on motorcycles, directed by John Carpenter with sets by Anton Furst.

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And if there is a Batman—a late-Eighties classic, edgy, pre-Chris Nolan Batman—he is more likely than not sitting at an office desk somewhere like Bruce Wayne without the trust fund, or perhaps slumming at home, really really really wanting more than anything just to sit this one out. Because he knows it’s going to be kinda a shit-show, he knows so much is going to be expected of him, and he’s just scared (and more than scared, as jaded as hell).

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And what will happen when Tim Burton drops out of directing our future and we’re left with Joel Schumacher? What will happen when we are all living in the tacky comic book world of, say, 1997?

Will we get the Batman we deserve? Will we only have Stanley Ipkiss, Barb Wire, and Shaq as Steel? And was Steel really such a bad movie anyway?

I’ve decided to just crawl into my college-years comic book world and hide out for a while as the Joker parade outside my window swarms around me. Maybe not so much to escape anything, but just to regroup. To think. To figure out my place in all of this.