Dark Victory Can Be The Story For The Batman Sequel

If Matt Reeves‘ The Batman was based on the phenomenal Long Halloween Batman comic, then the sequel should follow Dark Victory. This is one Batman comic that doesn’t get enough appreciation and I think it’s because it’s largely overshadowed by its predecessor. There’s no shame in that, considering the Long Halloween is one of the greatest comic storylines ever. And by that, I don’t just mean in the Batman comic run. Without a doubt, the Long Halloween represents everything Batman was originally conceived to be. It’s a gangster story, it’s a detective story, and it just so happens to have one of America’s most popular superheroes in it. And to top it all off, it’s one of the most tragic turning points in comic book history.

What happened in the Long Halloween led to something even more defining in Batman’s history in Dark Victory. While the Long Halloween led to the birth of Two-Face and the end of the friendship between Harvey Dent, James Gordon, and Batman, Dark Victory led to the iconic partnership of Batman and Robin. I am admittedly not the biggest Robin fan, but I’ve always dug the story of Dick Grayson. Dark Victory not only told another brilliant detective story, but was able to squeeze in a great origins story for the first Robin.

Now personally, I do find Dark Victory to be extremely underrated, but I still view the Long Halloween as the better Batman comic. I suppose I’m in the majority, rightfully so. There’s a reason we should appreciate the Long Halloween above most Batman comics. It marks a significant turning point in Batman’s history, when the Dark Knight’s crimefighting career ended with fighting the typical criminal mobsters. The criminal element he began fighting in Gotham was the notorious Falcone crime family, along with several other crime families. Mob boss Carmine “The Roman” Falcone had a firm grip on Gotham City for the longest time and had almost every cop in his pocket. That all changed when Bruce Wayne returned to his city and decided to become a bat.

But as we all know, Batman couldn’t fight these regular gangsters for all of his crimefighting career. When the year of the Long Halloween began, Falcone’s “Roman Empire” was beginning to crumble. This marked the beginning of the end for the “normal” criminals that have plagued Gotham City for so long and sparked a new age for the costumed freaks. And yes, that means everyone, from Joker, to Scarecrow, to the Mad Hatter, even Solomon Grundy. That’s quite the rogues gallery, one that Batman would go on to contend with for many years to come. And when the year for Dark Victory came around, all of this was greatly expanded on.

Now with all of that in mind, I don’t think it’s too hard to believe why Matt Reeves chose to adapt the Long Halloween for The Batman. His iteration of Batman really showcased how the Dark Knight is truly the world’s greatest detective. From the very beginning, he is shown to be a brutal fighter with tremendous punching power, but in the subsequent scene, he is shown analyzing a crime scene with James Gordon. Right off the bat, he is able to notice things the cops couldn’t, not to mention he could quickly answer the Riddler’s riddles. What makes the Riddler so intriguing is that he always strives to challenge Batman mentally. As the Riddler became a more prominent villain, he continued to put his world’s greatest detective title to the test.

For a rather rookie Batman in Matt Reeves’ movie, this was a good challenge for him. On top of dealing with a fledgling “costume villain”, Batman also had to contend with the gangsters of Gotham City. And the most powerful and intimidating of them all was Carmine Falcone. Much like the Long Halloween, The Batman marked the beginning of the end for the gangster criminals of Gotham and the coming of the more costumed villains. And (spoiler alert) since Carmine Falcone was killed by the Riddler in The Batman, just like he was killed by Two-Face in the Long Halloween, I think that sets up the stage for an adaptation of Dark Victory.

Not enough for you? Well, The Batman did explore how Selina Kyle was the illegitimate daughter of Falcone. This was briefly touched on in the Long Halloween and Dark Victory, but not expanded on. The interest Selena Kyle had in investigating the Falcone family went far beyond the head of the family. And here is where Matt Reeves could make a good adaptation of Dark Victory for The Batman sequel. One of the central figures in The Long Halloween was Alberto Falcone, the youngest son of Carmine. When the Holiday killings began, no one expected Carmine’s seemingly weak and quiet son to be a suspect. But eventually, it was revealed that Alberto actually did commit at least some of the murders.

But Alberto wasn’t the only child of Carmine Falcone who played a central role in the Long Halloween. Carmine’s strongest child isn’t his sons, but his daughter, the brutish Sofia Gigante. After Sofia was seemingly paralyzed by the end of the Long Halloween, she becomes the new boss of the Falcone Crime family. But when the year of the Dark Victory began, another serial killer began a new reign of terror. This new killer, dubbed The Hangman, went on a killing spree and targeted former and current cops.

The conclusion of Dark Victory revealed that Sofia was the Hangman and targeted anyone she viewed responsible for her father’s death. Now The Batman didn’t reveal if Carmine had any other children. However, I do believe the sequel can bring in his other children, especially Sofia, who would make for an unexpected antagonist. I think adapting Dark Victory for the next Batman movie can really dive into the end of the gangster era for this Gotham and the true beginning for the freak villains.

There will be a power grab for the control of the Falcone crime family and it’s the perfect time for Sofia to move in. She can seize power, wage war on the newcomer villains, including the Penguin. And why not bring in Alberto? His story continued and ended in Dark Victory, so if he were to pop up in the sequel, he can make for an unexpected rival to Sofia and the last person everyone would suspect of being a psychotic killer.

What are your thoughts, Batman fans? What route do you think Matt Reeves should take for The Batman sequel?

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