Zack Snyder surprised everyone a few weeks ago by telling us that the sequel to Man of Steel would also feature Batman. But who would play him? Word was that Christian Bale wasn’t interested.

Now we know the answer: Ben Affleck will don the batsuit and star along with Henry Cavill returning as Superman.

My first reaction: a long, sustained Uummmmmmmm….

I like Ben. I really do. He’s turned into a great director. He’s been very good in his recent films, especially Argo. So good we can forgive his unfortunate missteps. (Daredevil, anyone? Gigli?)

But replacing Bale as Batman? I… uh… well…

Avengers was great fun because it was unashamedly a comic book superhero movie. The Christian Bale/Christopher Nolan Batman films took a different path — a darker tone, a little more grounded in reality. I liked them. Batman Begins was great. Dark Knight was all about Heath Ledger. Dark Knight Rises was okay.

Man of Steel tried the same thing, with mixed results.

But with the selection of Affleck to play Batman, perhaps they’re thinking they want to lighten up the character a bit. If that’s the case, maybe I’ll be okay with this. If the story is good, if the script is good, maybe I’ll survive it. And hey, Amy Adams is coming back, and I have a serious crush on her. (If you diss Amy, I’ll cut you, man!)

We’ve got a long time to find out how this will turn out — we won’t see it until the summer of 2015. In the meantime fan boys will battle to the death whether this is a good or bad thing. But if the next announcement is that Matt Damon is playing Robin, I’m out. Way out.

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