It was a redemption story perfectly suited for a comic book. After hitting the depths of Hollywood following his ill-advised stint as Daredevil in 2003, Ben Affleck rose from the ashes of failure with visionary directorial efforts in movies like Gone Baby Gone, The Town and Argo.
Then, the prodigal son decided to give the superhero genre another shot when he signed on to Zack Snyder's Batman v Superman in an attempt to launch the new DC Cinematic Universe. It was all supposed to work out this time, though. Affleck had matured as an actor and a filmmaker, and comic book movies had become more sophisticated and refined since the sophomoric Daredevil landed with a thud in theaters.
Except now it's all happening again.
Scathing reviews, horrible press and an angry fanbase are giving people flashbacks to 2003 — but no one is feeling the heat more than Affleck himself. He was burned once by the superhero game, and here he is, 13 years later, going through the same nightmare again.
The Internet being the Internet, fans couldn't help but have a little fun at Affleck's expense, though. And so we've arrived at the meme that will come to define Batman v Superman's legacy: Sad Ben Affleck.
Look at that face. That's the face of a man who just saw all of the goodwill he accrued after Argo go up in flames — CGI flames that Snyder shot in slow motion.
And with Justice League filming next month, we may never see Affleck flash those pearly whites again.
Despite the millions of dollars The Fleck must have been paid to don the black and gray tights of the Caped Crusader, you can't help but feel a little bad, right? Especially since his performance has actually been praised pretty universally by critics and fans. Then again, top-notch performances and well-crafted scripts don't mean a thing under Snyder's directorial gaze.
For more on the comic books that inspired Batman v Superman check out the video below: