Here’s how 2008’s ‘Twlight’ dynamic duo K-Stew and RoPa can save the DCU
Last year some fearful mutterings were circulating among the good folks over at Film Twitter that “the guy from those Twilight movies might be the next Batman”. Apparently for some, Robert Pattinson’s career begins and ends with his embarrassing appearances in teen vampire flicks that he himself has denounced.
Anyhow, the world collectively lost its caped sh!* yesterday when the news dropped that our very own Robert Pattinson is in fact the frontrunner to don the shiny rubber suit in Matt Reeves’s forthcoming DC Comics movie.
Let’s just make one thing clear: contracts have not been signed, and nothing is written in stone yet – but things are looking good.
Pattinson would be the sixth actor to inhabit the role of the Dark Knight on the cinema screen, replacing hot mess Ben Affleck, who quit earlier this year following his stint in Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice and Justice League.
Given DC in the headlines of late, we couldn’t help but notice that there’s been a notable lack of mention regarding the forthcoming Batgirl movie. The silence perhaps represents the state of limbo the project currently sits in: despite being given the greenlight, Joss Whedon exited the project in 2018, rendering the untitled movie scriptless and directorless.
That’s perhaps what makes our favorite rumor attached to the film all the more exciting: a little winged beast told us that Warner Bros. is eyeing a “Kristen Stewart prototype” for the role of Barbara Gordon and her cape-wearing alter-ego, Batgirl.
With RoPa being named as the frontrunner to take up the role of the Dark Knight, we believe a K-Stew-esque Batgirl makes for an intriguing prospect – one that would no doubt delight the fans of the DC superhero whose previous incarnations have left a lot to be desired. Perhaps Warner Bros. could take this idea one step further – rather than find a K-Stew “prototype”, why not just book the legend herself?
Hear us out: while the Hollywood heavyweight has proved her acting chops in a number of indie projects since her twinkle-eyed Twilight days, we think Kristen could bring some much needed complexity and gender-fluidity to the role.
So if anyone from the Warner Bros. powerhouse is reading this, check out our pitch. Here are all the reasons we think K-Stew would make the most badass Batgirl in DC history.
It’s about time Batgirl got some solid screen time – K-Stew should be the one to deliver it
Batgirl first appeared in Gotham City in DC Comics’s Batman #139 back in 1961, starting out as Betty Kane before being replaced by Barbara Gordon and going on to become the superhero identity of several fictional characters. As an ally of Batman, Robin, and other prominent figures of the DC Universe, she was often sidelined and has never really had significant time to shine in the cinematic realm.
Yes, Alicia Silverstone was glorious as Batgirl in 1997’s Batman & Robin, but alongside George Clooney’s Batman and Chris O’Donnell’s Robin, she wasn’t given all that much to do in the film. The early 00s saw a Batgirl depiction by Dina Meyer, who starred as Barbara Gordon in the WB television series Birds of Prey.
But with the influx of Marvel and DC movies increasingly turning their attention to fierce female leads – including Wonder Woman, Captain Marvel, and Black Widow – it’s about time Batgirl was granted the same glory.
Batgirl is an important canon superhero, particularly to DC’s female fandom. As Mary Sue mused in November, “Batgirl is a symbol that belongs to everyone, particularly to women, girls, and anyone on the female side of the spectrum who needs a hero in which they can see her / themselves.” This is something Kristen would not only understand, but easily could deliver on with a compelling performance.
K-Stew has not only proved her range as an actor since starring in her early movie Panic Room, but has built up a reputation as a feminist icon unafraid to call out sexist bullsh!* when she sees it. Just like young movie fans across the world look up to Gal Gadot and her depiction of Wonder Woman, we believe Kristen would make the perfect Batgirl and consequently a solid role model for young female fans across the globe.
K-Stew could (and should) bring gender-fluidity to the role
Up until recent times, typical female superhero characters have been depicted as spandex-wearing, big-boobed, luscious-lipped, dick-lengtheners for their male counterparts – hell, Batgirl was only initially introduced as a love interest following speculation over the homoerotic subtext in the depiction of the relationship between Batman and Robin (which should’ve been allowed to flourish on its own, in our opinion).
This situation has started to change as the women of the comic book cinematic universes are portrayed as ferocious warriors who are (schock! horror!) actually capable of fighting their own battles rather than simply standing around pouting as they wait for their swinging dicks to return – but we have yet to see a gender-fluid superhero enjoying hes own movie.
This could all change were K-Stew cast in the role of Batgirl – during her career, the actor has continually picked the most interesting queer and gender-fluid roles, including her star-making turn in Olivier Assayas’s Personal Shopper.
During an interview on the topic, Stewart divulged how she’d be happy to play a man, stating: “Gender is a bit of a myth if you ask me. Everyone’s individual relationship with gender is totally theirs to define. But I really think because of the flexibility inherent to gender, there’s room for all types of approach.”
Even her roles in films like the military drama Camp X-Ray and stoner action-comedy American Ultra, Kristen has adopted these traits on a more understated but totally impactful way.
Since The CW is currently developing a Batwoman show in which the titular character’s bisexuality is set to be explored in a meaningful manner – making her the first openly non-hetero female superhero on TV – we think it only fair for Batgirl to be granted similar freedom to tread new ground with regards to gender.
After all, while Silverstone’s Batgirl was awesome, she lacked complexity and did little else other than look (totally) cute, pout a lot, and wear leather like a total badass. Perhaps now it’s time we saw a Batgirl who can show how nuanced sexuality can be – and as proven by her past performances, Kristen would be the perfect candidate to do so.
K-Stew’s performances prove her range and complexity as an actor
The reason the late, great Heath Ledger’s turn as the Joker in The Dark Knight was so significant and compelling was the dynamic complexity & darkness he brought to the role. Instead of just imitating the traits he’d seen in previous depictions of the character, he built upon their best idiosyncrasies, creating original beats of his own.
Kristen’s resume proves the actor is more than qualified to give a similarly legendary performance as the night-dwelling superhero, having shown a whole range of talents in numerous movies, from the playful Phoebe in American Ultra, to the sapphic swagger of Joan Jett in The Runaways, to the troubled stripper named Mallory in Welcome to the Rileys.
When it comes to the kickass action sequences, K-Stew’s had that down ever since her Twilight days, skills that were further sharpened when she portrayed a Guantanamo Bay soldier in Camp X-Ray.
But perhaps the most significant example of Kristen’s talents is the unnerving, restless energy she expels in Personal Shopper. While Supergirl and Wonder Woman are mainstays of the superhero genre, there’s a dark, gritty layer to Batman ingrained by torment and past struggles.
DC’s got a solid opportunity to do the same in its standalone Batgirl story, using a narrative to explore serious issues and present a character who, despite enduring hardships, has risen from the ashes and fought back in the name of integrity.
K-Stew has juggled all of these attributes with unrivalled finesse over the course of her acting career. As Batgirl herself once said: “It’s only the end if you want it to be.” In the case of Batgirl, K-Stew as the lead might be nothing more than a pipe dream. But for the character herself, this is only the beginning of her cinematic journey.
Speculation aside, we think Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart could be the dynamic duo to save the DCU. Let’s not forget the absolute abomination that was Justice League. Hopefully Warner Brothers gets our message.