Graham Nolan is the artist who helped writers Chuck Dixon and Doug Moench bring the character of Bane to life for the legendary 1993 Knightfall storyline, in which the human juggernaut overpowered the Bat both physically and mentally, and almost ended his life by breaking his back.
Bane turned out to be such a popular character that he was brought back to the comics numerous times, and made his first big screen appearance in 1997’s disastrous Batman & Robin, where he was played by Robert “Jeep” Swenson. But the character was so distorted in the movie—he was essentially reduced to being mute muscle for Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman)—that fans were furious.
Count Nolan among them. “To this day neither Chuck nor I have seen [Batman & Robin],” he told CineWeb Radio. “It’s so monumentally bad, I won’t waste my time. And the character in there … is NOT the Bane we created.”
Although he has yet to see director Christopher Nolan’s (no relation) take on the character for this summer’s The Dark Knight Rises, the artist has kinder words for what he’s viewed so far in photos and trailers. “I like what I see so far,” he said. “I understand the need to change certain things for a movie. The Batman costume of film is not that of the comics either. It’s more important to get the character right.”
Nolan also chimed in on the controversy over the muffled quality of Bane’s voice in the prologue sequence that was released to IMAX theaters in December with Mission Impossible—Ghost Protocol. “Yes, it is a bit difficult, but I am not going to judge the film by a pre-release clip,” Nolan remarked. “There is plenty of time to tweak the sound and enhance the clarity if the director decides it’s necessary.”