Even Alfred Has To Be Grim And Gritty In Batman V Superman

Even Alfred Has to Be Grim and Gritty in Batman v Superman

Pity poor Alfred Pennyworth, hapless butler to the Dark Knight. Or should I say ex-butler, as his role as the stalwart, stiff-upper-lipped servant of Bruce Wayne has been needlessly changed to something more in keeping with the BvS universe. A new companion book about Batman v Superman has made it out into the wilds a bit earlier than expected, and naturally the internet has started picking it apart for any tidbit of information about the movie. WhatCulture have posted a quick breakdown of some of the book's new information, almost seemingly all about Batman's role in the film -- and one of the most interesting is a factoid about Alfred's relationship with the Wayne family.

Turns out, Alfred was never their butler in the BvS universe, but was instead Thomas and Martha Wayne's bodyguard and head of security. Following their death, Bruce let all of the Wayne's servants go, except for Alfred, who still remains as the Wayne family Chief of Security, presumably over a section of staff that basically doesn't exist any more. Now that there's no staff, it's apparently Alfred that makes the decision to let Wayne Manor fall into disrepair, choosing to live in a "comfortable" trailer on the grounds of the ruined manor while Bruce slums it in a fancy lakeside pad.

Even Alfred Has to Be Grim and Gritty in Batman v Superman

Now, it's not 100 per cent out there -- this version of Alfred still has the SAS background his comics version has, and it's certainly not the first incarnation of Alfred to emphasise the character's military background as much as his reputation as Batman's servant (in fact, it sounds like the Alfred of Gotham, but on steroids -- a hazardous descriptor that probably shouldn't be attached to anything, frankly). But it's weird to just cut the most iconic aspect of the character out altogether. It's what people know Alfred as, and like I said, other interpretations have managed to push the character into a more active, rough-and-ready role while still maintaining that aspect. So why cut it out of Batman v Superman whole hog?

The fact Alfred is now the Wayne's head of security and personal body guard rather than just their manservant raises a pretty intriguing question though. What the hell was he doing the night Thomas and Martha Wayne were murdered? Shouldn't he have been, you know, bodyguarding them?

Even Alfred Has to Be Grim and Gritty in Batman v Superman

YOU HAD ONE JOB, PENNYWORTH. And it wasn't even butlering, apparently.

WATCH MORE: Entertainment News


    In the modern world it kind of makes sense that he would have been security for the Waynes. Also he appears to be only a bit older than Bruce in this film, perhaps 20 or so years older? If he had been serving as a Butler for many years with the Waynes before their death, he would need to be a lot older in the film to fulfill that role.

    The DCMU doesn't seem to be interested in sticking too much to established lore anyway

    Being a bodyguard is "Grim and Gritty"? Besides, just because you have a bodyguard , doesn't mean you are fully protected, ask JFK

    Last edited 20/02/16 11:21 pm

    Needlessly changed? Do you read the comics or are you just basing this off what you've seen in previous movies? The comics are always evolving and the Alfred we see in this movie is pretty much exactly the same Alfred we see in the Earth One continuity. He also isn't a butler in every continuity. In All Star Batman, he's a shirtless, ripped ex-British Secret Service. In the New 52 continuity, it was Jarvis Pennyworth, Alfred's father, who was the Wayne's butler. Alfred started taking care of Bruce and was way more hands on. This wasn't a "needless change". It's a smart, faithful change. As a comic book reader, it irks me to no end when people complain about "needless changes". Yeah, they're changing things from other films, but they are still staying very faithful to the comics. There are just many different comics to pull from and the DCEU is pulling all the elements that work with their universe.

    Also, in regards to @cameronj 's comment - "The DCMU doesn't seem to be interested in sticking too much to established lore anyway" , that could not be more wrong. It's just that most people don't have any idea about the lore. They watch the movies and take that as established lore which is crazy. They think Christopher Reeve's Superman is the way Superman is depicted in every comic. Nope. Man of Steel depicted a Superman that a lot of comic book fans were dying to see. It's a shame the movie's script was a let down, but if you say that Superman was "needlessly changed", you'd be wrong. If you say Batman is being "needlessly changed" because he isn't like Michael Keaton or Christian Bale. You'd be wrong.

    When you say Alfred was "needlessly changed", you are absolutely wrong.

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