The Batman successfully brought new renditions of classic Batman villains to theaters and with fans already clamoring for a sequel, Robert Pattinson’s next installment has the perfect setup to fix a previous Batman villain mistake in Killer Croc. Croc, whose real name is Waylon Jones, first made his live-action debut in the critically panned 2016 movie, Suicide Squad, played by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. David Ayer’s blockbuster was too jam-packed with characters to give Killer Croc a proper introduction and his backstory was simplified into a few lines labeling Croc a monster. While Killer Croc didn’t return for The Suicide Squad, many aspects of The Batman create the perfect opportunity for Killer Croc to become a true force to be reckoned with in The Batman 2. Born with a genetic mutation that gives him reptilian features, superhuman strength, and other abilities, Killer Croc has always been a formidable Batman foe. He started as an alligator wrestler before becoming a mobster and eventually graduating to bigger leagues, working with the likes of Black Mask, Ra’s al Ghul, and more. Croc has even gone toe-to-toe in a fight against Bane, who broke Batman’s back, which makes Croc’s lack of screen time in Suicide Squad even more egregious. The Batman 2 can fix Suicide Squad’s Batman villain mistake by making Killer Croc a compelling character as The Batman did with all of its villains. The Batman sequel is also perfectly set up for Killer Croc because of the ending of The Batman. The flooding of the city caused by Riddler’s car bombs opens up so much potential for Killer Croc to take over Gotham and lean into the noir, mystery, and horror elements that director Matt Reeves used in The Batman. This aquatic set-up, coupled with the villain’s prior mistreatment, means that any prospective The Batman 2 has the perfect chance to offer Killer Croc the onscreen redemption the character deserves.
Suicide Squad gives Killer Croc a lackluster introduction via Viola Davis’ Amanda Waller and a scant two lines of dialogue for the entirety of the film. Despite his scaly exterior, Waylon Jones is not merely the grunting lizard man Suicide Squad made him out to be. Killer Croc can be a nuanced character, as seen in Rocksteady’s Batman: Arkham Knight where Croc breaks out of Iron Heights Penitentiary and seeks revenge on those that cruelly experimented on him. But just as The Batman changed Hush’s origin, The Batman 2 could be a new origin story for Killer Croc.
The flooding of Gotham creates the perfect environment for Killer Croc to take over city, in addition to posing an obstacle for Batman in many ways. The flooded streets restrict the Batmobile and Pattinson’s Batman hasn’t quite gotten the hang of gliding through skies yet so Batman’s mobility through Gotham would be severely impaired. Killer Croc is a natural swimmer and allowing Croc the advantage of his natural habitat would reverse the Bat’s role by turning Batman into Croc’s prey. Furthermore, not only would Robert Pattinson’s Batman struggle mightily to defeat Killer Croc in a head-on fight, but he would also need to make use of his detective skills to track Croc to his lair. The Batman 2 has the perfect setup to fix Suicide Squad’s Killer Croc mistake, but since director Matt Reeves has already teased future appearances of The Batman’s Joker (Barry Keoghan), Killer Croc’s chances are looking slim. Even if Killer Croc isn’t the main villain of The Batman sequel, his inclusion in Reeves’ more grounded films could lead to the development of other villainous metahumans such as Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, or Clayface. Being able to introduce these characters while keeping with the tone of the first movie would definitely make Matt Reeves’ Batman trilogy a step up from Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy.