Would James McAvoy make a good Riddler? It’s hard to tell really but it seems like the answer might be a resounding ‘yes’. In fact for those that might be considering trying to get the role, such as Sebastian Stan or even Chris Hemsworth, James is possibly the better suggestion since not only has he shown that he can play an intellectual character, but it’s also been seen that he can and has played someone with a very serious intellect that likes to play games and be somewhat playful with those around him. Of course I’m alluding to the movie Split since he’s shown that he can handle a great number of personalities per film and still turn in an awesome performance, but his time spent as Professor Xavier has also molded him into someone that act like a serious and well-read individual as well. Those that know anything about the Riddler understand that this character is both highly intelligent and quite good at quizzing those he intends to victimize. He’s also been one of Batman’s greatest villains for quite some time and one of those that knows just who Batman really is. So in all honesty whoever plays him in the upcoming Batman movie is going to have to be at the top of their game since he’s not the kind of person that one just plays around with.
Yeah, you might be rolling your eyes since that what Jim Carrey did in his stint as the Riddler in Batman Forever, but if you recall while he was being funny and engaging he was still showing off a genius-level intellect that kept Batman guessing quite often all while Edward Nygma was able to move about in plain sight. That kind of intellect and arrogance is what the Riddler is made of and it’s no wonder that a few other names are being thrown into the hat as well such Tom Hiddleston and Simon Pegg. While you can definitely see either of these men being the quirky, intelligent type, McAvoy does seem to bring something that’s just a bit extra to the role that might be able to polish it off just a bit more. He’s capable of being an action star as well as an intellectual which therefore kind of puts him just above Pegg and just a little below Hiddleston, but well below Stan and Hemsworth, who are action stars without a doubt. But that’s kind of where McAvoy needs to be since he’s not such a mainstream action star but he’s not exactly the standard braniac that we’re used to seeing on screen. The fact that the next Batman movie is supposedly using the Penguin and the Riddler as its villains makes it obvious why McAvoy would be interested at this time.
Most folks should be able to admit that he does have the kind of quirky nature that would fit the bill for this character since in the comics, on TV, or in the movie it was never seen the Riddler was too serious or too overly comical, even with Carrey in the mix. He’s the type of character that will gladly sit back and let a hero try and figure out just what’s going on while laughing the whole while at the efforts being made to undo his plans, but he’s also the kind of villain that ultimately wants his riddles to be figured out since they lead to more and more riddles that end up finally leading to a master plan that usually spells the end for those that he’s leading around by the nose so to speak. A lot of times in the history of the character the Riddler has never had a serious hate-on for Batman, but he has been a lethal character that is capable of extraordinary things given his level of intellect. Before all that though he’s a regular human being, someone that can get knocked around just like anyone else. The only trick to doing this however is that the hero has to find a way to get to him since when it comes to trickery and deceit there aren’t a whole lot of mortal villains that are better than the Riddler.
It’s kind of obvious that the suit would be changed, but the customary bowler hat would need to stick around, and the cane is always a nice touch. But yeah, a skin-tight suit with question marks all over it would be kind of cheesy. But in terms of acting it does seem as though James would be one of the prime choices if only because he’s got the intellect and he has the capacity to show a violent character side, so he’s got a balanced take on the character that a lot of people couldn’t possible match. In fact, Tom Hiddleston should be his only real obstacle for such a role.