Nolan may detest the geeks, but he’ll take their money just the same.

At Comic Con 2004, Nolan and Christian Bale whetted appetites for Batman Begins with a videotaped greeting that was comical for its seething contempt. Perhaps this isn’t the case (and I doubt a confirmation from the Nolan camp is forthcoming), but the brief how-do-you-do really did look as if it were done at gunpoint, and, worse, on their lunch break. I don’t think anyone took it personally, but the vibe was unmistakably one of "We’d rather die than drop in on your nerd party".

With that, I’m happy to report that Nolan and Bale are alive and well; even though The Dark Knight is set to drop around this time next year (meaning it’s ’07 or nothing), the duo have once again opted to stay the fuck away from the Con. What’s more, they decided they’d rather have a multitude of differently costumed nerds watching their new teaser trailer on laptops than at the Warner Brothers panel. In other words, aside from the buzz around the convention floor, The Dark Knight skipped the Con altogether this year.

Was this a mistake? Not in terms of generating interest. But given the far from universal adoration for Begins, it might’ve been worth their time to give their base a little pickle tickle. Even a satellite interview (like Spielberg did for Indy 4) would’ve done the trick.

Because all they’ve got right now is this teaser. And it’s generating nothing but shrugs here at the Con. Which, I’ll admit, is an improvement over the near universal jeers elicited by the third act of Batman Begins.