We are just days away from The Batman premiere. Anticipation is definitely at an all-time high, but before we can see Robert Pattinson’s take on the cape crusader, let’s look at the ones who came before him. Now, I will only be doing the live-action actors in recent times, as I think those are the ones we are all more familiar with. Also, remember this is my opinion, so feel free to give me yours in the comments down below

5. George Clooney

George Clooney as Batman in Batman and Robin

I think we all saw this coming. George Clooney plays Batman in the 1997 Batman and Robin movie. Disclaimer, this used to be my favorite Batman movie so don’t think I rank this lightly, but sadly it has to come in last. The reason is that although Clooney plays a great Bruce Wayne, his Bat falls short. It is more comical than anything. Instead of being the darkly mysterious man we know, he plays it as if Bruce Wayne is at a Halloween party. Plus, he is completely okay with Batgirl joining them. We all know the dark knight does not like having a sidekick and barely accepts Robin.

4. Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck as Batman in the new Justice League Franchise

Hear me out before you judge. As we know, Ben Affleck plays the world’s greatest detective in the newest Justice League franchise and in Batman VS Superman. And yes, Affleck is a great actor, but as the cape crusaders, I just can’t buy it. See, Affleck does not have time to showcase his talent as he does not have a standalone film. What we do see of him is a cynical almost out of his prime man who just doesn’t care anymore. Another thing is, when acting as Bruce Wayne, I just see Affleck being himself. I do not get a Bruce Wayne vibe, but again that may be that his character doesn’t have room for development.

3. Val Kilmer

Val Kilmer as batman in Batman Forever

Third, we have Val Kilmer. Picking up where Michael Keaton left off for Batman Forever. Kilmer has some big shoes to fill and he does a great job with what he is given. He plays a pretty good Batman. His Bruce Wayne is what puts him ahead of Ben Affleck. This is because Kilmer’s Bruce Wayne is more believable. He is actually acting rather than just playing himself. Also, his dynamic of stubbornly refusing Robin’s help. That small bit really puts him in 3rd place.

2. Christian Bale.

Christian Bale playing Batman in the Dark Knight Trilogy

In second place is Christian Bale. We all know Bale plays the dark knight himself in the Dark Knight Trilogy and he does a great job at it. His portrayal of Gotham’s protector is amazing and seeing how he becomes the dark knight is a huge plus. Although his voice is questionable we do love his action sequences. The factor I love most about Bale is his Bruce Wayne. His Bruce Wayne is the one I envision when reading the comic books. He really plays the part of Wayne being his mask amazingly. Yet, there is still a slight imbalance of one aspect of the character being better than the other.

Honorable Mention.

Adam West as the original Batman.

Adam West. We know Adam West as playing the Bat in the 1960s. His Batman is iconic because of its nostalgic properties. He is one of the first live-action adaptations we have of the caped crusader. This puts him in our hearts forever because he is the first batman we all know. His batman was goofy, zany, and comical, but it is what the world needed at the time. His portrayal will always be classic.

1. Michael Keaton.

Michael Keaton as Batman and Bruce Wayne

Taking the number one spot is Michael Keaton. He plays Batman in Batman (1989) and Batman Returns. Undoubtedly a huge project to take on as it was a reinvention of who Batman is. These two films by Tim Burton show us the way Batman is supposed to be. A dark mysterious Noir type of hero. Keaton, a comedian, understandably was hesitant to take on the role. But, as we all know he did a phenomenal job. He brought Batman to life not only by the look standards but how he sounds. Keaton’s whispered Bat voice is what we think of when we hear Batman talk. The reason Keaton is number one is his ability to play Bruce Wayne and Batman equally. His Bruce Wayne is broody yet witty. As well as giving the playboy billionaire vibes and showing how Bruce Wayne is his mask, not Batman. He does both parts equally well and takes away the disconnection there always seems to be with these two characters. When others actors play Batman and Bruce as two different people, Keaton gives us something different. He plays them each as what they are the same person in different circumstances. And that is what makes him Batman. Bruce doesn’t have a different personality, he is always Batman in his mind as even what he does as Wayne is calculating. Keaton captures this perfectly. So when he whispers “I am Batman”, he means it.

What do you guys think? How would you rank the different versions of Batman? What are your thoughts on the upcoming The Batman movie? Let’s chat in the comments down below.