By Joe Schmidt
When it comes to ComicBook.com’s annual Golden Issue Awards, few topics are as contentiously debated among the staff as the category of Best Comic Book Movie each year. Because there are so many superhero and comic-based projects gaining prominence each and every year, the writers and editors often find themselves at odds when it comes to determining which film deserves our top honor in the year-end voting. This year was no different, but with projects including Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, The Batman, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Black Adam, and the surprising Disney+ Special Werewolf By Night, it’s not difficult to see why we all fought over a worthy winner.
In the end, the movie that won was not only a surprising direction for an established, fan-favorite hero, but one of the most refreshing comic book movies we’ve seen in the long-running franchise. Few movies, comic-based or otherwise, could even compare.
And the winner for the 2022 ComicBook.com Golden Issue Award for Best Comic Book Movie is…
Clocking in at nearly three hours with a pulse-pounding score, intense violence, and a plot inspired by some of DC’s best detective comics, The Batman is a true tour de force for the character. And while it includes echoes of the original Tim Burton franchise, takes influence from Christopher Nolan and Christian Bale’s trilogy, and even has a bit of the same flavor from Todd Philips’ Joker, The Batman stands out as a wholly unique cinematic entry featuring pop culture’s most unique crime fighter.
After a mixed bag of results from DC’s various franchises and a renewed effort at course correction, director Matt Reeves charted a unique journey that puts an emphasis on the World’s Greatest Detective. Star Robert Pattinson, the subject of many internet debates when his casting was announced, truly proved to excel under the cape and cowl. Co-star Paul Dano provided what’s probably the most comic-accurate depiction of the Riddler on the screen to date. And the entire movie established a new version of Gotham City that fans are excited to revisit.
The Batman serves as a reminder of this character’s versatility. After the adventurous series of the ’60s, the gothic takes from Burton and Bruce Timm, Schumacher’s colorful expansion of the Bat-Family, Nolan’s grounded take, and Zack Snyder’s expansion of the DCU, we’ve seen many variations of DC’s iconic hero over the last 60 years. And The Batman proves that there’s still plenty of material that talented creators can mine for many decades to come.
The nominees for Best Comic Book Movie are:
The Batman – WINNER
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Werewolf By Night
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