All 10 Batman actors ranked from worst to best

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Batman

LONDON, ENGLAND – FEBRUARY 22: A Batman costume from the 2012 Dark Knight Rises film worn by Christian Bale and designed by Lindy Hemming is on display at the DC Comics Exhibition: Dawn Of Super Heroes at the O2 Arena on February 22, 2018 in London, England. The exhibition, which opens on February 23rd, features 45 original costumes, models and props used in DC Comics productions including the Batman, Wonder Woman and Superman films. (Photo by Jack Taylor/Getty Images)

10. Lewis Wilson

The very first live-action Batman, Lewis Wilson starred as the World’s Greatest Detective in the 1943 film serial. The 15-part black-and-white offering, appropriately titled Batman, was released in theaters and proved to be a financial success, eventually spawning a sequel.

Though it hasn’t exactly aged well, it wasn’t critically-acclaimed at the time of its release either – with one of the main criticisms stemming from its lack of production values. Unfortunately that was also referencing the costumes and, as a major part of Batman’s aura is all about appearance, Wilson was fighting an uphill battle.

The Bat-suit indeed left a lot to be desired, with the unnecessarily baggy top making him look a lot bulkier than he was (and not in a good way) while also inadvertently making the bat symbol a lot smaller than it needed to be. Then you have the mask itself, which almost tried too hard to be comic-accurate and, due to the lack of rubber, ended up looking more like a Halloween mask with devil horns instead of Bat-ears.

That being said, Wilson holds the honor of being the first ever live-action Dark Knight and, in spite of the serial’s shortcomings, it must have been an awe-inspiring sight to see this young comic book legend come to life on the big screen. Furthermore, he was believable in the role and was particularly strong as Bruce Wayne.

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