25 January 2022 1457 Views

THE BATMAN heats up its media marketing magic

by James Murphy

I am still in no way excited to see this latest iteration of the caped crusader’s adventures. But I do hand it to them: the marketing is getting hotter..

Back when THE DARK KNIGHT was at its peak of audience interest on release, there was speculation, already then, about what would happen in its inevitable sequel.

The natural idea was to use RIDDLER and PENGUIN as post Joker baddies. There was much chatter about casting Leeeeeooo Di Caprio as the former and the great Philip Seymour Hoffman in the latter role. In retrospect, that would have been all too easy and obvious for Christopher Nolan. He made DARK KNIGHT RISES, instead. The rest is history.

The common denominator in any version of a Batman film in those years was a first rate VIRAL media campaign. The ‘why so serious’ Joker games in 2008 were followed by the Bane reveal / chanting chorus of ‘DESHI BASARA’ in 2012.

Fast forward to today, 2022. Ten years. We now get that Batman v Riddler and Penguin film. But the viral dimension is missing. Correct me if wrong btw.

But I am not seeing a Riddler game online. A massive missed opp, surely? ‘Not only in promotion of the movie but also in generating additional revenue, surely?

I have said, repeatedly, that we live in a now post viral world. Yes, the principle is still there in so far as one can market a movie via guerrilla tactics and sub-divisions of marketing.

Social media is now the well and source rather than simply the filter of the hype. Understood. But there are still versions of and variations on the old models of generating publicity.

One case in point is a the release of clips and extended TV spots. Those go beyond a trailer. Like mini movies in themselves. THE BATMAN has gone with that very tactic. And it does work. See below, click and observe!

For example, any doubts one might have about Pattinson’s ability to do the titular character justice are eliminated, instantly. His eyes capture the hero’s brooding, longing, self-sacrifice and insular world view projected onto a cityscape of crime wars.

Just LOOK at the actor in the church scene as he relates to the lost, orphaned boy at a funeral. His immediate, innate instincts to protect a reflection of his own childhood loss.

Beautiful. Brilliant. BATMAN! 

I do wish they’d dressed him better, though? Bruce Wayne is MEANT to look the part of the billionaire, suave man about town. It is PART of his actual disguise, leaving the masked vigilante side as, ironically enough, his ‘true’ self.

Frayed collar, floppy hair and EMO skinny look simply draw attention to Pattinson’s Bruce, which in turn, would surely stretch credibility of people not suspecting he is a weirdo who dresses up in kinky leather and rubber to beat off criminals at night. I might rephrase that. I might ;).

I am still not ‘sold’ on this film. Kinda feels redundant to me. AND THREE HOURS LONG FFS?!  Sorry! Just nooooo.

But I am now a tad more curious to see it and both optimistic and generous in my expectation and hope for a pleasant surprise on its release in cinemas. In that sense, this IS good, truly ‘viral’ marketing. Bravo! 



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