We’re still more than a year away from the debut of The Dark Knight Rises, and stories like these are where you, as a fan, must decide whether to cross an ideological line in the sand. Are you okay with knowing beforehand that certain characters feature in the film, since you won’t be aware of how exactly they function in the finished storyline until you actually see it? Or will the smallest taste of preemptive knowledge completely ruin the experience for you—and if so, why are you clicking on articles with headlines like this? Anyway, if you fall into the former camp, please assume some modicum of diplomacy with the latter camp, with whom we part ways here. Seriously. Stop reading and go elsewhere.
[REDUNDANTLY TELEGRAPHED SPOILER ALERT] According to HitFix, Liam Neeson has filmed an appearance reprising his Batman Begins role as Ra’s al Ghul. This would seem to shore up those earlier reports that Josh Pence had signed on to play a younger version of the character, and leads to all sorts of speculation about whether it’s Neeson or Pence that features in flashback, or whether Pence plays a Lazarus Pit-resurrected version of the villain. Obviously that’s one thing we probably won’t know until we see it. But in the meantime, it’s a twist that confirms Nolan really is intent on creating a genuine Batman trilogy, one that will bring the whole series full circle at its conclusion. And that’s reassuring, should anyone actually need any reassurance at this point.