Recently, new promotional images of The Riddler in The Batman (2022) were released online, resulting in a debate over the iconic DC villain's look. The promotional image and a recently released first look at Funko Pop! Figures from the film showcased Riddler's entire outfit
In Matt Reeves' The Batman, the Riddler's costume will forgo the character's campy outfit in previous films and comics. In the upcoming movie, the Batman villain will be sporting a US military-inspired-M65 field jacket instead of a green suit like in the comics or cartoon. This aligns with the gritty and dark approach Reeves took compared to previous iterations.
The images also showcased Dano's antagonistic character wearing an extreme cold weather face mask commonly used by the military. The tactical approach to Riddler's costume hides his identity and invokes a psychopathic vibe from the character.
Fans divided over The Riddler's serial killer inspired look in Reeves' The Batman (2022)
While several fans complained about the lack of resemblance to the villain's comic book origin, a series of tweets scoffed at those who wanted Dano's Riddler to have spotted his campy comic-accurate costume. The debate also spawned multiple memes from the latter side.
What inspired The Riddler's costume in The Batman (2022)?
When the first teaser showcased Dano's character, fans believed the actor might be playing the 'Hush' version. However, trailers later confirmed the character's identity as the Riddler.
In the 2019 DC animated film Batman: Hush, Edward Nygma (The Riddler) assumed the identity of Hush. In contrast, in the comics, Bruce Wayne's childhood friend Tommy Elliot was Hush. Hush sported a dark-colored trench jacket with leather gloves in the comics while his head was covered with bandages. This might have partly inspired Paul Dano's new look in the new film.
The Batman's Riddler seems to have been inspired by the real-life serial killer Zodiac, who tormented the San Francisco area in the late 60s and early 70s. Like Dano's Edward Nashton, Zodiac covered his face with a mask and reportedly wore glasses over it. Furthermore, the serial killer also sported a cross-like symbol on his clothing.
Dano's character in Reeves' The Batman also symbolizes his M65 field jacket in the recently released promo photos. The similarities increase because Edward Nashton, in the upcoming film, is set up as a serial killer targeting corrupt officials in Gotham City.