BATMAN RETURNS (1992) [REDUX]

Why yes, I did briefly write about Tim Burton’s BATMAN RETURNS a few years ago, but I wanted to return to it because I don’t think I said all I had to say about it then. Also, my wife gifted me a Christmas portrait of the reveal of HELL HERE, and it’s one of the best gifts I’ve ever received, by one of my favorite artists — Dijana Granov. This photo does not do it justice: her watercolors and markers lend it a luminosity and vibrancy that feels like the character is reborn, and rightfully so. (Also, my wife framed it properly as a window sill, which is absolute perfection.)

I’ll note that I hate overly demonstrative performances like these being labeled as camp, because no: it’s not. It’s sincere. We all have our breaking points. What affects me about Catwoman and BATMAN RETURNS is her being reborn out of traumatic circumstances, in a new skin, and becomes vengeful because of it, but also stronger — a different person.

When she reacts to hearing her abuser’s name on her answering machine, after literally being killed by him, she flies into a fury that I’ve felt so many times; loud acts of desperation, exacted solely because you don’t know what else to do. And then Selina becomes …..something different, someone different, someone capable of reconciling her strife.

“Honey, I’m home.

Oh, I forgot. I’m not married.”