Production might have been halted on The Batman once again after leading man Robert Pattinson tested positive for COVID-19, but the teaser trailer that debuted at DC FanDome is still being pored over and dissected frame by frame as fans look to glean any sort of information that they can about next year’s reboot.
Based on the footage, it would appear that Paul Dano’s Riddler is shaping up to be the movie’s major antagonist, and director Matt Reeves has already been effusive in his praise for what the actor has brought to the role, but with Colin Farrell’s Penguin and Zoe Kravitz’s Catwoman in the mix, too, not to mention the majority of plot details still remaining shrouded in mystery, there’s every chance that it might just be a red herring.
In fact, a new fan theory is now speculating that the Riddler could be much more than a straightforward bad guy, and may even find himself positioned as more of an antihero by the time the story draws to a close. You see, the trailer seemed to indicate that both Dano’s Edward Nashton and Pattinson’s Bruce Wayne are targeting Gotham’s rampant corruption, albeit through very different means.
Fans have unearthed clues that could be teasing an appearance by the Court of Owls, and Bruce’s parents have ties to the group in the comic books. That would technically make them the true villains of the story, and despite being positioned as enemies, the Dark Knight and the Riddler would ultimately be working towards the same goal by aiming for the very heart of the city’s corruption.
If this is the direction the plot is headed in, then the Riddler’s constant messages to Batman would not only see him attempt to prove his intellectual superiority, but also hint that he knows the problems the Caped Crusader faces run much deeper than they appear on the surface, and by referring to himself as a ‘secret friend,’ it could turn out that the hero and villain are both after the very same thing in the end.