With great power comes great responsibility…to not ruin another hero franchise. In the past decade comic books have become a once again popularized inspiration for screenwriters, and while that fact is enough to make the closet nerd in me squeal in delight, it seems that the directors continually choose from the same pool of actors. For better or for worse.
Two prime examples are Ryan Reynolds and Ben Affleck, whom after their infamously cringe worthy performances as the Green Lantern and Daredevil left moviegoers and comic fanatics alike wondering if the actors could even save themselves from the train wrecks that were these two movies. But now they have decided to reboot these characters and have them suit up once more and hopefully do justice to the charismatic crime fighters they have been chosen to embody. Reynolds is set to play Deadpool A.K.A. Wade Wilson in the self-titled flick coming out later in February. At the same time Ben Affleck is playing the Caped Crusader himself in the new Batman vs Superman movie hitting theaters in late March. But the most notable actor who has taking on the role of a super powered savior multiple times, is Chris Evans. First he was the showstopping Johnny Storm A.K.A. The Human Torch in the mildly decent Fantastic Four Franchise. Now he is patriotically perfect, Captain America. But men aren’t the only ones who get a second chances in the world of comic characters. In 2004, Halle Berry catastrophically butchered the role of the notorious Batman anti-hero, Cat Woman. A couple years later though, we saw her again as the spectacular Storm in the X-Men franchise, erasing any memory of her previous role, which was more vixen than villainess. And while we have yet to see Deadpool or Batman vs Superman, we can only hope that it’ll be better than the actors’ first attempt at superhero stardom.
It’s almost like these actors suffer from a bad case of ugly duckling syndrome. Where at first they start off as this huge casting mistake, shunned and ridiculed by the public around them. Then sometime later, when it seems like the world has finally forgotten the cinematic hell they put they put us through, they emerge once again like a phoenix rising from the ashes, more radiant than before. However there are some exceptions to this cycle, such as actor Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who not only killed it as the comical lead role in the Kick-Ass franchise, but successfully shined as the seriously speedy Avenger Quicksilver in Marvel’s Age of Ultron. But sadly these exceptions are not always for the better as seen by Nick Cage’s dreadful roles as Johnny Blaze in the Ghost Rider franchise and as the Batman inspired “Big Daddy” in the first Kick-Ass movie. Sometimes being a hero isn’t so super.