Batman has one primary rule: not to kill. That rule was broken though, either to the acclaim or determent of comic book fans and general moviegoers everywhere, in Zack Snyder’s Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice earlier this year. It wasn’t merely that Batman straight-up killed people in the divisive blockbuster; he slaughtered them, often in ways that would not merely kill the victims but, in some cases, leave their corpses well beyond recognition.
Does this matter, though? What’s the real impact of the Caped Crusader doing such a thing? These are a few of the questions explored in the new video essay “Everyone Batman Kills in BvS (And Why It Matters),” from YouTuber Folding Ideas. In the 6-minute video, the editor puts to rest the idea that Batman didn’t kill anyone — which is an absurd theory that, nevertheless, is believed in some circles.
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The evidence is unambiguous, as the narrator notes. But the video isn’t merely an excuse to shut down those claims, but rather to make a point on how we should study the text as it exists, not merely how we wish — or want it to exist. It’s not that Snyder’s decision to have Batman kill is a poor creative choice on its own. Rather, it was a poor choice in the eyes of the viewers, based on their reception and history to the character, and it was ultimately the wrong one for many.
While the editor is rather neutral on the matter, based on this video alone, he does bring up some strong points and makes a very clear case for his argument. Whether you love the decision that Snyder made or hate it with the intensity of, well, Batman in this movie, it’s ultimately up to the viewer to determine their stance through facts, evidence and clear, thorough reasoning.