By: Kryptonian Detective

One of the many reasons for “The Dark Knight’s” hype and ultimate success was its use of viral marketing.  This is obviously not lost on Warner Brothers, as the studio has once again employed the technique.  One day after announcing the start of filming the official website has launched.  Upon arriving to the site fans a greeted by a blank page, which loads an audio clip of a crowd chanting (the League of Shadows perhaps?). The intrigue continued on twitter, with an account called The Fire Rises.  Following this account, and typing #thefirerises somehow leads to the first official image of Tom Hardy as Bane!

It’s really hard to make any judgment at this point because all you see is half of his face/mask and his back. My initial assessment on what’s in front of me is that Bane looks physically imposing, and threatening.  For a still that doesn’t reveal much, this is already an improvement over his first live action film debut. Really though, let’s be honest, Bane could be wearing jeans and a hoodie, and it would’ve been better than that campy neon fetishistic crap-fest “Batman & Robin.”  It looks like this is the start of another impressive viral marketing campaign, that will make the fans a part of the experience, which Warner Brothers hopes will send them into a fevered frenzy for “The Dark Knight Rises” on July 20, 2012!