New American Centurion
“You think this can last. There’s a storm coming Mr Wayne. You and your friends better batten down the hatches. Because when it hits you’re all gonna wonder how you ever thought you could live so large and leave so little for the rest of us.”
So speaks Selina Kyle, AKA Catwoman, in this week’s trailer for The Dark Knight Rises, with a prescience promising a resolution of Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy uncannily zeroed in on the Zeitgeist.
Ever since comics legend Frank Miller dispatched a missive of purest vitriol in the direction of the #OccupyWallStreet movement, speculation has been being speculated by the usual suspeculators as to exactly where the caped crusader stands on the issue.
Here, for those who missed it, (care of Bleeding Cool) are Miller’s very words, through the prism of a page from The Dark Knight Returns, his irrefutably epic (and, in places, exquisitely poetic) riff on Gotham’s grandee:
[UPDATE: Hideously, this is a lie. It's actually from BATMAN: YEAR ONE. Also Miller. Also epic.]
For my money, it would be an exercise of particular pointlessness and narcissistic nerdery to scribe some sprawling diatribe pondering precisely where Batman’s feelings lie. He’s a comic book character, y’know, he kind of goes where we please in that respect, morally confused, the ace of spades in a house of cards, and I’ve not yet had breakfast.
He presents an interesting paradox though, of benevolent billionaire donning a disguise from behind which to bat for the little guy. Going toe-to-toe with the status quo, all the while reaffirming it: that you need money to buy toys, and toys to play hero.
Bottom line is he’s as schizophrenic as the rest of us, wants to have his cake AND give it to some homeless guy. Inconsistent as hell, a true sell-out, just doing it with style. A kid with a few natural talents who got pushed to his limit, and decided to push back.
Maybe that’s Miller’s story. He went to his special place, a place filled with empty bourbon bottles and scrunched-up monkey porn, and got angry. Saw that his best years are behind him, his best comics too, and figured he’d take it out on the softest target Google had to offer.
Maybe the ‘Ladies’ and ‘Gentlemen’ are actually you and I, and Miller the embittered voice of a power elite telling us we had it too good, that the party’s over, that the imminent implosion of their regime spells hell-fire for us all. Telling us to get a job, get busy, die stupid. Telling us to await Mitt Romney’s ‘American century’, or no century at all.
(‘Batman vs Occupy Wall Street’ illustration up the top there pilfered from Boulet.)