Power Rankings: Live Action Batman Portrayals

The SAW Power Rankings is our weekly ranking of a certain movie related topic. Please feel free to comment on our rankings and provide a list of your own in the comments below.

After the official news broke last week that Robert Pattinson will have the honor of being the 12th, yes 12th, man to don the cowl of the Dark Knight in a live action role, we at the SAW offices thought this would be a perfect time to rank our top five Caped Crusaders.

Now I know the first thing you are thinking is What nickname are we giving Pattinson’s Batman? That’s a whole other discussion for another day about why you should be punched in the face. The second thing that may have popped in your head is Who are the twelve actors to play the Batman? Well, our crack (emphasis on crack) research team here at SAW is on the job to give you mostly correct information. Maybe correct. Don’t fact check.

Here we go!

The first actor to play Batman on film was Lewis Wilson who starred in a 15 part serial made in 1943 with the next being Robert Lowery in 1949. Batman would take a break till we received arguably the most iconic portrayal of Batman in the 60’s by none other than Adam West. In 1989, Michael Keaton would become a generation’s Dark Knight after uttering his classic “I’m Batman” line. Val Kilmer and George Clooney would follow shortly after. (A little nugget that I wasn’t aware of, is that there was a brief cameo by The Bat in a WB TV series called Birds of Prey in 2002. Apparently, the identity of the actor remains unknown till this day.) The next appearance of the Caped Crusader would be in 2005 when Christian Bale donned the cowl for Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight Trilogy. Ben Affleck would take over in 2016 and the tenth would be David Mazouz, who mainly played Bruce Wayne on Fox’s Gotham until the finale where he would become Batman in the series finale. There has also been a casting for Batman on the DC streaming service show The Titans season 2 with Iain Glen wearing the cape. All caught up?

To have a little fun and create an unbiased list, I awarded points based on an intricate formula to the actors that were ranked and came up with our tentatively definitive ranking of the best Batman! Here is the ranking of the actors with each of our individual rankings below:

  1. Michael Keaton- 47 points
  2. Christian Bale- 46 points
  3. Ben Affleck- 40 points
  4. Val Kilmer- 22 points
  5. Adam West- 21 points
  6. George Clooney- 4 points

Vote on your favorite Batman and let us know your rankings and thoughts below in the comments!

Vincent Kane:

  1. Michael Keaton
  2. Ben Affleck
  3. Christian Bale
  4. Val Kilmer
  5. Adam West

Billy Dhalgren:

  1. Michael Keaton
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Adam West
  4. Ben Affleck
  5. Val Kilmer

King Alvarez:

  1. Michael Keaton
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Ben Affleck
  4. Val Kilmer
  5. George Clooney

Marmaduke Karlston:

  1. Ben Affleck
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Adam West
  4. Michael Keaton
  5. Val Kilmer

Sailor Monsoon:

  1. Christian Bale
  2. Michael Keaton
  3. Ben Affleck
  4. Adam West
  5. Val Kilmer

Blank Stare:

  1. Michael Keaton
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Ben Affleck
  4. Val Kilmer
  5. Adam West

Romona Comet:

  1. Michael Keaton
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Ben Affleck
  4. Adam West
  5. Val Kilmer

Joe Newman:

  1. Christian Bale
  2. Michael Keaton
  3. Ben Affleck
  4. Adam West
  5. Val Kilmer

Saint Pauly: 

  1. Ben Affleck
  2. Christian Bale
  3. Michael Keaton
  4. Val Kilmer
  5. George Clooney

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Who is your favorite live action Batman?

Author: Vincent Kane

I hate things.