Top 10 Differences Between The Gothams Of Nolan And Burton

6 of 12

7. Greys and blacks vs. Washed out ochres

True to form, Burton’s BATMAN films are studies in blacks and greys, with measured out pops of bright color much in the style of a comic book. The second film in particular has a muted color scheme that holds up quite well, thanks in no small part to the villains’ complementary monochromatic costumes (DeVito and Pfeiffer’s scene together in the office attic is still a favorite). On the other hand, BATMAN BEGINS has a warmer (but still effectively unsettling) color palette, typified by the Scarecrow’s horrifying burlap mask and the evil visions he inflicts on his victims.

Author: Dan Heching

Photo Credit: Jonathan Rosenbaum
lightAmazingly, Bruce Wayne is about to don his Batsuit for the seventh time in a little over 20 years, with the role of Batman becoming a nouveau-James Bond of sorts—a grand total of 4 actors have portrayed him thus far. When the original BATMAN came out in 1989, superhero films were far from guaranteed successes; effects and makeup still hadn’t quite risen to the standards of what the deliriously imaginative comic creators could come up with. Nevertheless, Tim Burton’s BATMAN was a commercial and (mostly) critical success, enough to ensure delivery of the (arguably) better sequel BATMAN RETURNS three years later. Fast forward (remember that?) to 2005, and MEMENTO director Christopher Nolan resuscitated the franchise with the much more realistic BATMAN BEGINS, which in turn was also followed by a superior sequel, THE DARK KNIGHT.


While comparing the drastically different Batman universes of Tim Burton and Christopher Nolan might seem a fruitless endeavor, an interesting way to explore them is through the directors’ treatment of the Dark Knight’s beloved Gotham City. 


Author: Dan Heching10. Product Tie-ins: Coca Cola vs. Mountain Dew9.  Jack Nicholson vs. Heath Ledger8.  The Bat-Signal7. Greys and blacks vs. Washed out ochres6.  Henchmen5. Crowds of Gothamites
4. Soundstages vs. On location3. New York vs. Chicago2. Pat Hingle vs. Gary Oldman as Commissioner Gordon1. ‘Stylized’ Dark vs. ‘Bleak’ Dark