Ben Aldridge and Jack Bannon talk Pennyworth Season 3 and Batman Comics

We don’t often see much of a live-action Thomas Wayne outside of his brutal death. Which comics or Batman movies, if any, have influenced your direction? And what’s the most exciting thing about taking on the London of the 1960s and 70s?

Ben Aldridge: As soon as I was cast, both Jack [and I] were like, ‘Oh my god, we’re playing these iconic characters. People will have expectations [of] us.” Then we were quickly reassured when we realized that we [were] playing them and inventing them together with Bruno [Heller] before comic lore. So nobody can turn around… They can have opinions, but they can’t turn around and say, “You’re wrong.” So that was quite a relief, but also very exciting.

I’ve watched every incarnation of his death on camera, from cartoons to more recent films and such, to see what existed of him thus far. [I] tries to read around personality traits he has. The mustache is in there because he was depicted with a mustache in the comics, so I wanted to do that. Bruno said, “Are you sure?” And I said, “Yes.”

It’s interesting playing someone and knowing the person they become, but not knowing the story of how they got there. Bruno was brilliant at inventing the whole CIA element for him, the spy element for him, [and] his moral compass, which is repeatedly questioned throughout the three seasons.

… It’s cool to join something that has legendary status and hope you’ll complement it in creative ways.

Speaking of history, [are] there [any flashbacks or storylines from Thomas’ days in] the “Batman” comics you’d like to touch [in the show]?

Aldridge: I tried to portray Flashpoint as me being Batman. You won’t. Also, I think there’s a scene in one of the comics where Thomas goes to a costume party dressed as a bat, which I thought was cool. It’s way too on the nose.

What I like about what we do is that we look at the personality traits of Martha, Thomas and Alfred coming together to raise Bruce. You have the radical vigilante Martha – the heart for justice. Then you have that moral, conscientious, intelligent, neurotic father in Thomas. We always look ahead to see what will come of it. Ben Aldridge and Jack Bannon talk Pennyworth Season 3 and Batman Comics

Charles Jones

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