I've been reading comic books pretty regularly for over 20 years. Now that they've become kind of mainstream with the popularity of Avengers and the awaited conclusion to the newest Batman trilogy I feel vindicated in my love for "kiddy books".
But something that is kind of fun for a comic fan is to try and figure out how the stories are going to be adopted before they even come out. Like comic fans and non-fans, I enjoyed Batman Begins and The Dark Knight and now the last chapter is being released in a few months and although the studio has released some teasers about the story, they have been pretty secretive about what the story is actually about. I figured this would be a fun place to put my guestimate about what we are all in store for with one of the biggest movies of the year a month before it comes out.
From what I can tell, this story seems like it is going to be a combination of the classic Batman stories Knightfall and No Man's Land.
In the comics during Knightfall, a new villain named Bane broke all of Batman's villains out of prison and exhausted Batman by making him fight all of his old villains and exhausting him before breaking in to The Bat Cave and fighting Batman himself and beating him by breaking his back, but not killing him. This forced Batman to find a replacement for a while as he recovered and then eventually coming back and beating Bane and the new Batman who went a little overboard with his new power.
A few years later, there was another epic storyline in the comics called No Man's Land which showed a huge earthquake hit Gotham City and the city was so crime-savaged and the damages became so expensive that the US government decided to let Gotham City exist on its own and they declared Marshall Law and blew up all the bridges going to and fro Gotham City and Batman and his co-horts (Robin, Huntress, Batgirl etc) were the only people to keep order.
If my guess is correct from what they are showing in the trailers the movie will start with Batman being on the run from the law after the events of The Dark Knight, but although he's a vigilante in the shadows, he has a pretty strong grasp on the crime element in Gotham City and crime is not a huge problem in Gotham anymore since all criminals fear Batman.
I expect Bane to come to Gotham City early in the movie with a challenge to himself to find and beat Batman. Bane is a character that enjoys challenges to perfect himself since he is a criminal genius as well as a drug addict who is addicted to a steroid called Venom.
I believe within the first hour of the movie, Bane will fight Batman and beat him, most likely because Batman has not had a big challenge in some time, and in this fight Bane with break Batman's back and claim Gotham City as now his instead of Batmans.
The next half-hour of the movie will feature Bruce Wayne and Alfred trying to figure out if he will ever walk again and Batman dealing with his fear of Bane while we also see Bane take over and raise up a new Underworld.
Eventually there will be an earthquake which will force Marshall Law on Gotham City and this will also force Batman to come out of retirement and face his fear of Bane.
This is of course a rough outline and I am not sure of how Catwoman will fit in. (Will she be a lackey of Bane, or someone that is out for her own? My guess is the latter) Also, the studio is heavily hinting that Batman may die at the end of this movie. I think it's possible this will be true, but not in the way that they are hinting. I think what may happen is Batman will beat Bane somehow (most likely by turning his Venom feed against him in some way and making him OD), but then the movie will end followed by a flash into the future of showing an old man Bruce Wayne living in a utopian Gotham City that he helped create with Batman's form of protection. This way we will see an old man at peace with what he did for the first time and he will die old and in peace.
This is at least all that I would like to see, and understand I may be way off.