What Are Some Theories Around ‘The Batman’?

WARNING: Potential spoilers for The Batman below.

As The Batman nears its March release date, the filmmakers have done their best to keep the plot of the Robert Pattinson film under wraps considering, this time around, director Matt Reeves wants to showcase why the classic DC Comics character is the World’s Greatest Detective. Clocking in at just shy of three hours, The Batman will be a deep noir dive that pits the Dark Knight against The Riddler, who seemingly knows a great deal about Bruce Wayne and his family’s secrets that may lie at the heart of Gotham City’s corruption.

However, even with the plot of The Batman being closely guarded, that hasn’t stopped fans from picking apart “clues” from the trailers and running wild with theories. Here are just a few of them including a rumored appearance from the Clown Prince of Crime, and a huge potential change to Batman’s mythos, if any of them are true.

Paul Dano’s character isn’t The Riddler.

Following the release of a new The Batman trailer in October, fans couldn’t help but notice that Paul Dano’s face is never shown, which immediately kicked off a flurry of speculation that Dano isn’t the Riddler. Since then, he’s given interviews about playing “Edward Nashton” and the difficulties of the Riddler’s new costume, but fans are convinced that the film contains a shocking reveal about the true identity of the character who pushes Batman to his limits while murdering his way through Gotham.

Barry Keoghan is The Joker.

While the marketing for The Batman has leaned heavily on Catwoman, Penguin, and The Riddler appearing in the film, fans are convinced that one of the Dark Knight’s biggest rival could make an appearance. After combing through an international trailer for the film, a Joker-like smile is spotted in one of the background photos. Coupled with reports that Warner Bros. has reportedly wrestled with whether or not to include a certain actor in the trailers, fans are now theorizing that Barry Keoghan is the Joker. Keoghan’s casting in the film is confirmed, but the character he’s playing has been shrouded in mystery. Of course, it could all be a red herring for The Riddler reveal, but fans are buzzing that he could be the Battinson version of the Joker.

Batman Robert Pattinson

Thomas Wayne is connected to the Court of Owls.

As each new trailer and TV spot drops, it becomes more and more likely that The Riddler not only knows Batman’s secret identity, but also, a great deal about the Wayne Family. As shots of the trailers have shown, the Waynes are connected to the series of murder being committed by The Riddler who seems hell-bent on exposing the corruption in Gotham. In the comic books, one source of that corruption is the secretive Court of Owls. A shadowy group of Gotham’s elites who control all facets of the city with their wealth and highly effective assassins. According to Screen Rant, fans noticed that The Riddler leaves Batman a greeting card with an owl on it. This clue has led to speculation that Bruce’s father, Thomas Wayne, is connected to the group and was possibly even one of its members, which would significantly tarnish the Wayne family legacy.

Bruce Wayne is adopted.

And now for the wildest theory via CBR. After the release of “The Bat and the Cat” trailer, fans picked up on clues about Edward Nashton’s backstory that point to him living in an orphanage. There’s also photos of Thomas and Martha Wayne with their eyes scratched out, which suggests Nashton has a deep-ceded grudge against the wealthy couple. One reason for that animosity? They adopted Bruce Wayne instead of him. If true, this would be a dramatic change to Batman’s origin story and set him on a path that has never been explored before as Reeves and Pattinson, hopefully, get to explore the character further in a planned trilogy of films.

The Batman starts playing in theaters on March 4.