August 20, 2022

Big words

Matt Reeves’ The Batman has been out in cinemas for a little 0ver a week and has been met with some very positive reviews – but one thing people are praising in particular is Paul Dano’s turn as The Riddler.

In fact, the Caped Crusader’s latest antagonist has wowed audiences so much that it is being compared by some to arguably the greatest superhero villain performance ever, Heath Ledger’s Joker.

Arguably one of the most recognised method performances in the history of acting, Ledger’s Joker is often perceived as an unattainable level of excellence. That being said, many feel Dano has matched, if not bettered it.

The 37-year-old notably treated the role with similar intensity, spending prolonged periods in self-imposed isolation refusing to even hug his partner as he prepared for the role. The method approach clearly seems to have worked.

While some are hailing the film and Dano’s performance as the “best” Batman film of all time, others are being slightly more measured and despite confessing their love for this version of The Riddler, it’s hard for anyone to forget about both Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix’s iconic Joker roles.

The character of The Riddler itself already had a big name attached to it, with Jim Carrey famously playing him in Batman Forever and although it was certainly a more exaggerated version, Dano seems to have made an even bigger impact.

Many are now urging fans of the performance to go and watch his other films, having received plenty of acclaim for his parts in Prisoners, There Will Be Blood and his directorial debut, Wildlife.

The debate might have started out as whether Robert Pattinson would be a better Batman than Christian Bale but now the focus very much seems to have shifted to the man opposite him.

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