Was feeling a little salty this morning when I started my daily BOF chores and I unfortunately came across an article via my news feed that related to 1995’s BATMAN FOREVER.

I’m going to take the long way home here, so stay with me.

Mark Wahlberg recently appeared on the Happy Sad Confused podcast (great stuff there from my friend Josh Horowitz) where he revealed that he was up for the role of Dick Grayson/Robin in BATMAN FOREVER.  That makes sense because in the early 1990s when Joel Schumacher/WB would’ve been casting for that movie, Wahlberg was starting to become a hot property as a young actor in Hollywood.  Of course, Chris O’Donnell — hot off of SCENT OF A WOMAN — got the role and the rest is Batman on film history. (FYI: O’Donnell is actually a year-ish older than Wahlberg, so either one of them could’ve played a 17-year-old.)

Cool. But that’s not what I’m salty about.

I read this via a website that I shall not name (one of the usual suspects) that turned it into a BATMAN FOREVER bash-fest…and an ignorant and incorrect one at that.

You know, clickbait bullshit.

For the record, BATMAN FOREVER did not “fail to garner the same excitement” as its predecessor, BATMAN RETURNSFOREVER was a HUGE hit in 1995, was released amidst a lot of hype and anticipation, and with a domestic box office of $184 million, it was the #2 film of the year grossing more than 1992’s BATMAN RETURNS with its $168 million. In fact, in 2024 money, FOREVER‘s domestic box office would be about $375 million — basically on par with 2022’s THE BATMAN which currently is the #3 best Batman film at the box office (not adjusted for inflation, FYI).

BATMAN FOREVER was a huge success, period.

Unfortunately, FOREVER gets unfairly lopped in with 1997’s BATMAN & ROBIN — which, historically speaking, debuted with essentially the same amount of pomp and circumstance as FOREVER, but, well, sucked. (For the record, I forgave BATMAN & ROBIN a long time ago — thanks to Christopher Nolan’s THE DARK KNIGHT TRILOGY and Matt Reeves’ THE BATMAN and actually don’t mind watching it…in small doses.)

RELATED | BATMAN FOREVER: The Movie That Could’ve Been

Also, I must address the article of my ire’s report of how Robin was received in BATMAN FOREVER

No, Dick Grayson/Robin in the film DID NOT “largely fail to impress.”  That’s total nonsense as well.

If you’re a regular reader of this website, you know that I’m not a big Robin fan and I prefer solo Batman without sidekicks.  But, if you want to be “comic book accurate,” FOREVER did a good job introducing the character to the Batman film series back in the day.  And no one raised hell that the (baby-faced) 20-something O’Donnell was playing a 17-year-old-ish Dick Grayson back then.

The bottom line here is that the idea that BATMAN FOREVER was a failure and its version of Robin was “controversial” is all bullshit.  One may not like the film and that’s OK, but to say it was basically a bomb is flat-out false.

If you are going to editorialize what is supposed to be a straight-up news story, then you better as hell have witnessed/lived it (which I did) or do better GD research. – Bill “Jett” Ramey