Radio conservative Rush Limbaugh has launched what looks like a marketing boon for the final Batman movie, The Dark Knight Rises, out Friday: It's another Hollywood pinko plot against Republican presidential soon-to-be nominee Mitt Romney.
As Robin might have once said, Holy cow, Batman! But pay attention, here's Rush's thinking:
The movie's villain is a mask-wearing, gas-breathing terrorist named Bane. Bain Capital is the investment firm Romney used to run before he got into politics. Get it?
"Do you think it is accidental that the name of the really vicious firebreathing, four-eyed whatever-it-is villain in this movie is named Bane?" Limbaugh said Tuesday on his radio show. Limbaugh, who has never made a secret of his contempt for Hollywood liberals, did not explain why he's giving publicity to a movie he suspects.
And it's not like the caped crusader needs extra publicity; yammering about Dark Knight is already flooding the entertainment media. Nor does Romney need the continued yammering in the news media about whether Bain was a job-producing or job-killing hedge fund.
Limbaugh did not come up with this on his own. The Washington Times and the Washington Examiner, both conservative papers, reported that Democrats and liberal bloggers were the first to make the Bane-Bain connection and suggest using it against Romney.
But now conservatives, led by Limbaugh with his zillions of listeners, are talking up the alleged link, hoping to spur Romney into fighting back more forcefully against President Obama's attacks on his Bain days.
Meanwhile, it's all free promotion for the movie.
Update: At the London premier, director Christopher Nolan said he was baffled by Rush. "I'm not sure how to address something that bizarre, to be honest. I really don't have an answer for it; it's a very peculiar comment to make."
The comic book writer Chuck Dixon, who co-created the Bane character in the early 1990s, before Romney got into politics, responded on his message board, Dixonverse.net.