Why’s it Forgotten? The Amazing Spider Man and Batman Forever
Kevthewriter ponders the relevance of Val Kilmer’s Batman and Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man.
If you think about it, The Amazing Spider-Man and Batman Forever are kind of similar. They were both superhero movies that had divisive reactions from audiences (ASM did slightly better with critics than BF did) but then had sequels that were trashed by both audiences and critics, disappointed at the box office (though didn’t exactly flop), and ended up getting the franchise rebooted.
Another difference is that Amazing Spider-Man was a complete reboot while Batman Forever was supposed to take place in the same world as Batman ’89 and Batman Returns, despite having a lighter, goofier tone and only having two actors come back.
But, while Batman Forever and Amazing Spider-Man may not be looked back all that fondly, the receptions to those movies were nothing compared to their sequels. The sequels, Amazing Spider-Man 2 and Batman & Robin, were hated so much by everyone that the sequels have basically overshadowed what came before, despite getting worse reviews and doing worse at the box office. Whenever people talk about how much they hated Marc Webb and Joel Schumacher’s iterations of Spider-Man and Batman, I’ve mostly seen them pull examples from the sequels rather than the original films.
But the reason I think they are more remembered than what came before is because they are bad in a more memorable way. Amazing Spider-Man and Batman Forever definitely have their flaws but they are kind of forgettable and just seem like mediocre superhero movies and nothing more at the end of the day. Their sequels, on the other hand, are so bonkers and weird that it’s easier to remember them because their absurdities make them stick out compared to the more normal first films made by the same director.
As a result, because these two sequels were just so odd and weird, it has given them more of an impact with audiences, even if they don’t like them, which, at the end of the day, makes them more memorable than the two films that came before.